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THE following Memoir was written by Mr. Colden, at the request 
of a Committee of the Common Council of the City of New 
York, made to him a few days previously to the arrival of the 
first Canal boat from Lake Erie. 

It was presented to the Mayor of the City, on board the 
steam-boat Washington, one of the fleet which accompanied the 
Canal boat to the ocean, on the fourth day of November, eighteen 
hundred and twenty-five. 

When the aquatic procession had arrived at a point in the 
Atlantic, south of Long Island, the Governor poured water, 
brought by the Canal boat from the Lake, into the sea. Doctor 
Mitchill, also, performed so^e ceremonies, and delivered the 
address, which will be found in a subsequent part of this 


The Recorder of the City, and the Committee of the Com- 
mon Council, then requested of Mr. Colden the Memoir he had 
prepared at their desire. In presenting it to the Mayor, Mr. 
Colden said, he had not been unambitious of the part assigned 
him in the celebration, and wished he could have performed 
the duty more to his own satisfaction, and in a manner more 
deserving the honor of having his Memoir placed in the city 

That, in the Memoir, he had adverted to the circumstances of 
our country, previously to, and at the time the Canals were com- 
menced, and had endeavoured to trace these great works to their 
origin, and in their progress to their consummation. That he 
had, also, attempted to anticipate their advantages and effects, 
not only in respect to our own State, but in regard to the Union, 

That, since the Canals were projected, many subjects con- 
nected with them had arisen, which had excited great difference 
of opinion, and much feeling. These points, Mr. Colden said, 
he had, as far as possible, avoided ; but, when he was obliged to 
notice them, he had endeavoured to divest himself of every kind 
of bias, and to observe the utmost impartiality and fidelity. 

That he was, notwithstanding, fearful he might be subject to 
the charge of injustice, in having omitted to notice some persons. 


whose claims to be mentioned as friends, and supporters of the 
Canals, are equal to those of many whose names appear in the 
Memoir. Mr. Colden said, if there were such omissions they 
proceeded from want of information ; and, when it was consi- 
dered how little time was allowed for inquiry on this subject, he 
hoped they would be excused ; he trusted, also, he said, that the 
same consideration would entitle the Memoir to some share of 
that indulgence which, notwithstanding his best efforts, he was 
very conscious it would need. 



To Messrs. Wilson and JVichoUs, Bookbinders, JVo. 2, Pine Slrcet, 

1 TTonoraMe Catiwatxader D. Coldex, ... 

2 Map of the Uuited Stales colored, - - - 

3 Map of the State of New York, colored, ... 

4 Governor Cui.iikn s Map of the Five Indian Nations, 

5 Frontispiece to the Appendix, - . _ 

6 Map of North America — Lithopraphic, facing Commemoration, &c. 

7 Map of the State of New York — Lithographic, facing Preparatory Arran»ement5, 

8 Honorable Pmi.ip HoNE — facing: Report of Aldermen WxcKOFF and Hone, 

9 Panoramic View ot the Fleet — lacing the Explanation, 

10 Marine Societies Plate — facing Marme Society, • 

11 Nautical Institution — facmg New York Nautical Institution, 

12 Pilots Plate— Facing Charitable Society, 

13 Banner of the Whitehall Watermen — Aquatic Procession, 

14 Ditto Land Procession, 

15 Hook and Ladder Companies, - - 

16 Fu-e Works, - . . . . 

17 I)e Witt Clinton — feeing his Address, . - . 

18 Samcel L. MiTCHiLL, M. and LL D. — facing his Address, - 

19 Honorable William Padldisg — facing the Mayor's AdUrdss, 

20 Geological section of the Canal — facing NaiTative, 

21 Buffalo, from the Light-house, .... 

22 Buffalo, from the Village, .... 

23 Entrance to the Harbor, Lockport, ... 

24 Lockport, from Prospect HiU, .... 
2j Process of Excavation, Lockport, ... 
20 Deep Cutting, Lockport, .... 
27 View of the Cahooes, .... 
23 View of the Junction of the Western and Northern Canals, 

29 Honorable Richard Riker — facing Department of the Fine Arts, 

30 Corporation Badge Plate, .... 

31 BaU Ticket, - . 








32 Plan of the Fleet, - - - - - " - 351 

33 Societies Badges, - - - - " - - 372 

34 Chairmakers Society, 
33 Ropemakers Arms, ------ 

36 Students of Columbia CoUeo-e, - - - - - - 380 

37 Primitive View ot New York, - - - - - - 382 

38 Washington Fire Company, No. 20, ----- 388 

39 Kasl River Fire Company, No. 42, - - - - - 3S9 

40 Fire Engine, No. 15, - - - - " " ^^^ 

41 Eagle Company Ensrme, No. 13, ----- 390 

42 Clinton Fire Company, No. 41. - - - - - 391 

43 Phenix Fire Company, No. 22, ----- 392 

44 La Fayetle Fire Company, No. 7, - - - - - - 392 

45 Aiito-raph Fae Similies, - - - " " - 396 

46 Lithographic Transfer fiora Copperplate, - - - - - 397 

47 The Crest of the City Arms pn the Cover of the Book. 

Note.— The seal ol the City to be impressed ou the Books designated by the Corporation. 

m^m^im ^©. 

THE Oceans and the Mediterranean Seas of our Continent are united. 
Canals, extending more than four hundred miles, have been completed in 
little more than eight years, by the energies and resources of a single State, 
within the territories of which no white man had set his foot at the 
beginning of the seventeenth century. 

Vessels, w^aterborne from the shores of Lake Erie, over the intervening 
hills and vallies, will meet ships from the Atlantic, at a point which, two 
hundred years ago, was surrounded by a wilderness, filled with savage 
tribes, hostile to each other. 

They, like other human beings in the same uncivilized state, seemed to 
consider war as their natural condition, and had a proneness to treat every 
stranger as an enemy. Their ignorance and superstition led them to 
believe every thing supernatural, which was extraordinary. When they 
discovered the first European vessel approaching the land, apparently 
growing out of the ocean, and finally saw that there w^ere human forms 
about it, they thought it their great Manitto with attending spirits, moving 
on their waters. 


The meeting of the boats from the Lakes, and of vessels from the sea, 
will be near the spot, where he who discovered, and gives name to our 
magnificent river, landed in the year sixteen hundred and nine. 

The first ground within the territory of this state, which Hudson 
touched, it is believed, was Coney Island. 

How different will be the scene now presented, and that which he 
beheld ! 

We shall have around us the same great objects of nature : The seas — 
the beautiful bays — and our magnificent mountain river : But instead of the 
huts of savages, we shall have the abodes of a civilized, opulent, and a free 
people : — Instead of uncultivated wilds, we shall be surrounded by a country 
yielding all that is necessary to the comfort of man : — Instead of savages in 
their canoes, yelling with amazement, as when they first saw the vessel of 
Hudson, there will be magnificent barques, gorgeously decorated, bearing 
thousands of our fellow citizens, exulting in the accomplishment of a work 
which is an evidence, how immeasurably civilized, transcends savage man. 

To celebrate an event in which the citizens of this state may justly feel 
so much pride, and which is so deeply connected with their interests, is to 
indulge very natural feelings — But it is a higher sentiment, Mr. Mayor, 
which has induced the honorable body over which you preside, to engage 
in the proposed celebration with so much zeal and liberality, and which 
will induce many thousands of our fellow citizens to unite with them on 
the occasion. The great work of improving or creating inland navigation 
in the United States has but commenced. In our own State there are a 
hundred paths over which navigable waters are yet to be led ; and within 
oin- national territory, the field for such improvements is boundless and 



almost uncultivated. We shall rejoice in the completion of our canals, not 
only for our own sakes, but with the hope that the acclamations of our cele- 
bration will be heard by all who need encouragement to follow our example. 

Nor do I tliink that we should be unwilling to confess, that upon this 
occasion we are desirous to attract the attention of foreign nations. — They 
have told us that our government was unstable — That it was too weak to 
unite so large a territory — That our republic was incapable of works of 
great magnitude — That these could only be performed where corporal labor 
might be commanded and enforced, not where it must be voluntary. But 
we say to them, see this great link in the chain of our union — in the great 
bond which is to bind us together irrefragably and for ever. — It has been 
devised, planned, and executed, by the free citizens of this Republican 
State. A work merely of pride and ostentation, it is true, could not be 
executed here. It would be as impossible to build the pyramids of Egypt 
on our soil, as it would be to float them to our shores ; but works that are 
useful, and connected with the public good, will only have opponents, as 
we have seen in the progress of this great enterprise, so long as there are 
doubts and fears as to its character and practicability; but let these be 
determined, and the suggestions of patriotism will be better stimulants than 
the sceptres of despots. 

Before I proceed in the course which I propose to pursue on this 
occasion, and which I will indicate, when I shall have the honor to put 
into your hands this Memoir, permit me to add a few words, in addition 
to what I have already said, in relation to the state of our country 
previously to, and at the time the canals were commenced. 

It is, comparatively, but a short time since, all here was wild and 
savage. It is possible that the fourth generation from the discovery of 

almost uncultivated. We shall rejoice in the completion of our canals, not 
only for our own sakes, but with the hope that the acclamations of our cele- 
bration will be heard by all who need encouragement to follow our example. 

Nor do I think that we should be unwilling to confess, that upon this 
occasion we are desirous to attract the attention of foreign nations. — They 
have told us that our government was unstable — That it was too weak to 
unite so large a territory — That our republic was incapable of works ol' 
great magnitude — That these could only be performed where corporal labor 
mioht be commanded and enforced, not where it must be voluntary. But 
we say to them, see this great link in the chain of our union— in the great 
bond which is to bind us together irrefragably and for ever.— It has been 
devised, planned, and executed, by the free citizens of this Republican 
State. A work merely of pride and ostentation, it is true, could not be 
executed here. It would be as impossible to build the pyramids of Egypt 
on our soil, as it would be to float them to our shores ; but works that are 
useful, and connected with the public good, will only have opponents, as 
we have seen in the progress of this great enterprise, so long as there are 
doubts and fears as to its character and practicability; but let these be 
determined, and the suggestions of patriotism w ill be better stimulants than 
the sceptres of despots. 

Before I proceed in the course which I propose to pursue on this 
occasion, and which I will indicate, when I shall have the honor to put 
into your hands this Memoir, permit me to add a few words, in addition 
to what I have already said, in relation to the state of our country 
previously to, and at the time the canals were commenced. 

It is, comparatively, but a short time since, all here was wild and 
savage. It is possible that the fourth generation from the discovery of 

New York, is not yet extinct ; — ^It is possible that the great-grand-child of 
a man who saw Henry Hudson is yet living. 

But short as the time is since there was any settlement of civilized man, 
on this part of the continent, even in that short time, the progress of 
civilization has been continually disturbed and retarded. 

The Dutch claimed, and took possession of this part of the country, in 
virtue of its having been discovered by Hudson, while he was in their 

The settlements made by the Netherlanders were very insignificant; 
but new and feeble as they were, they were harassed by continual disputes, 
and sometimes wars ; not so much with the savages, as with their civilized 

The Colony was involved in the contests between its mother country 
and the English, which terminated in sixteen hundred and seventy-four, 
when the New Netherlands were finally ceded to Great Britain. 

From this time to the commencement of the Revolution, the Province 
of New York was involved in the wars in which England was almost 
uninterruptedly engaged, or its peace and prosperity was disturbed by 
intestine commotions. 

The struggles between the French and English, for advantages in the 
fur trade, kept the Colonies continually embroiled with the savages. In 
the year sixteen hundred and ninety, these remorseless beings sacked and 
burnt Schenectady, and murdered most of the inhabitants. 


At the comraencoment of the revolution, the population of the territory 
which now forms the State of New York, amounted to no more than one 
hundred and eighty thousand. 

Notwithstanding the revolutionary war of eight years, the number of 
inhabitants increased, and at the peace in seventeen hundred and eighty- 
three, amounted to about two hundred thousand, not much exceeding the 
present population of the city. Yet in the year seventeen hundred and 
eighty-eight, when a treaty with the Indians was held at Fort Stanwix, the 
now beautiful, populous, and cultivated country through which the western 
Canal runs thither, from the shores of Lake Erie, contained not a single 
white inhabitant. 

The nature of the Government, previously to our independence, was 
very unfavorable to the progress of improvements. No great work has 
been accomplished by colonists, at least in modern times. Perhaps the 
rule of Great Britain was as little oppressive to those she called her chil- 
dren, as that of any other parent state, yet the Colonial restraints and 
impositions then thought justifiable, were such, that the wonder is not, that 
we shook off our chains so soon, but that we endured them so long. It 
was not the mere right to tax her Colonies without their consent, which 
Great Britain claimed, that led to their revolt. The restrictions she im- 
posed for the sake of her commerce were insupportable. The Colonies 
were not allowed to manufacture the produce of their own soil. They 
were obliged to send raw materials to England, that they might be returned 
by her manufacturers, charged with whatever they pleased to exact for 
profit. We can hardly believe at this day, that when we were under the 
dominion of our mother country, the noise of trip hammers and rolling 
mills, which are now every where heard in our mountains, Avould have 
been considered as treasonable sounds. 


At the comniencement of the revolution, the population of the territory 
which now forms the State of New York, amounted to no more than one 
hundred and eighty thousand. 

Notwithstanding the revolutionary war of eight years, the number of 
inhabitants increased, and at the peace in seventeen hundred and eighty- 
three, amounted to about two hundred thousand, not much exceeding the 
present population of the city. Yet in the year seventeen hundred and 
eighty-eight, when a treaty with the Indians was held at Fort Stanwix, the 
now beautiful, populous, and cultivated country through which the western 
Canal runs thither, from the shores of Lake Erie, contained not a single 
white inhabitant. 

The nature of the Government, previously to our independence, was 
very unfavorable to the progress of improvements. No great work has 
been accomplished by colonists, at least in modern times. Perhaps the 
rule of Great Britain was as little oppressive to those she called her chil- 
dren, as that of any other parent state, yet the Colonial restraints and 
impositions then thought justifiable, were such, that the wonder is not, that 
we shook off our chains so soon, but that we endured them so long. It 
was not the mere right to tax her Colonies without their consent, which 
Great Britain claimed, that led to their revolt. The restrictions she im- 
posed for the sake of her commerce were insupportable. The Colonies 
Avere not allowed to manufacture the produce of their own soil. They 
were obliged to send raw materials to England, that they might be returned 
by her manufacturers, charged with whatever they pleased to exact for 
profit. We can hardly believe at this day, that when we were under the 
dominion of our mother country, the noise of trip hammers and rolling 
mills, which are now every where heard in our mountains, would have 
been considered as treasonable sounds. 

The vast and fertile regions of the west, with which we have opened 
communication by our Canals, were doomed to be a perpetual wilderness. 
The crown, and Colonial Governors, refused to make grants at any distance 
from the sea-board, lest they should become inhabited by a people who 
would feel but little respect for laws so much at enmity with their interest, 
and who would be out of the reach of coercion. 

Ireland, though not a Colony, is treated as a dependency of England. 
Her population, in proportion to her territory, is greater, and her natural 
advantages are at least equal to those of the Island of Britain. Yet Ireland 
has only two or three Canals, of no great extent, while England has upwards 
of one hundred, extending more than twenty-four hundred miles. 

Florida was for a long time a Colony of an European nation, M'hich 
owned the mines of Chili, Mexico, and Peru. Had this Province continued 
subject to Spain, there is little reason to believe, that any part of the 
treasures transmitted from the new to the old world, or the resources 
which the genial climate and fruitful soil of this beautiful country might 
have afforded, would have been applied to opening a Canal through the 
Florida Peninsula. Within four years from the cession of this territory to 
the United States, a project for a Canal through it, from the Atlantic, to the 
Gulf of Mexico, is on foot, and on the point of execution. 

Spain had also under its government the Isthmus wliich separates the 
Atlantic and the Pacific. Jealous of her Colonies, she did not encourage 
any attempt to form a communication between the oceans. 

The spirit of liberty has spread its influence to every part of this 
continent. Independent governments are hardly estabashed to the South, 
before it is proposed to unite the two great seas. 

JUEiUOlK. 9 

Do we not see in these expansions of the minds of men the moment 
they are set free, how far despotic goverments confine the human faculties, 
and limit the happiness of a people ? To use and enjoy the reason and 
power with which man is endowed by his Creator, he must have liberty 
and independence. 

There is as much difference between man, the subject of a despotic 
government, and the citizens of a free representative republic, as there is 
between waters diverted to some artificial channel, and the deep current 
of Niagara, pouring through its natural course, irresistible, but by the 
hand of the Almighty. 

Let us suppose these objects accomplished. — Let us suppose the two 
great oceans united through the Isthmus of Daricn — the Atlantic and the 
Gulf of Mexico through the Peninsula of Florida. Lot us suppose the 
waters of the Lakes united with the Mississippi, as those of the Lakes are 
now with the Hudson. These will be the works of republican governments. 
When they are completed, which probably will be within a few years, we 
shall not fear to compare them with any thing that has been done in the 
old world, for the happiness of mankind. We may see in many countries 
works of the same nature, but their benefits are limited to the narrow 
spaces which they occupy, or at most, to the territory in which they exist ; 
but the Canals we have accomplished, and those on the point of 
being executed, will affect the whole world. They will make an 
important change in the arrangement of the lands and waters of the earth, 
the effects of whicii will be felt by the whole human species. We know 
how much wealth is accumulated in Europe. We see " the gorgeous 
palaces, the cloud cap't towers,"' which are the pride and boast of its 
inhabitants. We turn to the history of the ages of the existence of its 
governments; we read of their wars — of the many fields covered with 

their slain, and of their contests which have clyed the ocean with human 
blood, but we do not admit that these have given to those who have so long 
contemned our republican institutions, claims as the benefactors of mankind. 
But we acknowledge that the scientific institutions of the Europeans, the 
progress they have made in the arts and sciences, their cultivation of the 
human mind, deserve admiration. We do not forget that our fathers 
were from the other side of the great waters, and brought with them that 
spirit of liberty which has been transmitted through many generations, and 
has animated the Washingtons and Bolivars of the North and of the South. 
The historians, poets, men of learning and science, in the old world, are 
not more admired and revered on the soil which gave them birth, than they 
are in these distant regions. Whenever we estimate our political freedom 
and happiness, we remember how much of it we owe to the lessons we 
have learnt from our trans-atlantic ancestors ; nor shall we ever refuse to 
admit, that the great works of art, the completion of which we are about 
to celebrate, and which seem so much in advance of our age as a nation, 
could not have been accomplished without the science and examples we 
derived from abroad. 

We date our independence from seventeen hundred and seventy-six. 
But our existence as a nation must be calculated from the conclusion of 
the Revolutionary war in seventeen hundred and eighty-three. From that 
time the water communications between the Hudson and the Lakes Cham- 
plain and Ontario, seem to have attracted the attention of our citizens, 
with a view to open and improve them ; though long previously the streams 
of the north and west and of the south, and the facihty with which they 
might be united, had been noticed. 

Quebec was founded by the French, the year before the North River 
was discovered by Hudson. When afterwards the English became 


possessed of the trading establishments at Albany and Schenectady, the 
Wood Creek of Lake Champlain, and the Wood Creek of the Oneida Lake, 
were the routes by wliich, in peace, there was intercourse between the 
estabhshinents on the Lakes and the Saint Lawrence, and those on the 
Hudson River. In times of hostility these water courses, and the inter- 
vening portages, were traversed by the armaments of the hostile Colonies. 
and were the war paths of their savage allies. Consequently, though the 
country between the Lakes, and the Saint Lawrence and the Hudson, was 
all wilderness, its topographical features were perfectly well known. 

In seventeen hundred and twenty-four, the then surveyor general of the 
Province of New York, made a report to the Colonial Governor, in « hich 
he describes the water courses and carrying places between Albany and 
Montreal, by way of Lake Champlain, and between Albany and the 
Cataraqui Lake, which is now called Ontario, by the Mohawk River, and 
the river which runs into the Oneida Lake, with as much accuracy as they 
could be described at this moment. The carrying place between the 
Mohawk, and the stream which we now call Wood Creek, he describes 
as " a portage only three miles long, except," says he, " in very dry 
weather, when the goods must be carried two miles further." He then 
describes the passage down the Onondaga River, to the Cataraqui Lake, 
and shews that goods might be carried from Albany to that Lake by the 
Mohawk, the Oneida, and the Onondaga River, cheaper, and much more 
conveniently, than as they were then transported, to the mouth of the 
Oswego River by way of the Hudson, Lake Champlain, Montreal, and the 
River Saint Lawrence. 

At the moment I am writing, I hear the cannon, which, at the 
termination of a line of five hundred and thirteen miles, repeats the signal, 
that the first boat from Lake Erie has entered the Western Canal, on her 

way to this city. Who that has American blood in his veins can hear this 
sound without emotion ? Who that has the privilege to do it, can refrain 
from exclaiming, I too, am an American citizen ; and feel as much pride in 
being able to make the declaration, as ever an inhabitant of the eternal 
city felt, in proclaiming that he was a Roman. 

This abrupt digression may be incompatible with the sober character 
a written memoir ought to preserve : but the excitement which so extra- 
ordinary and wonderful a circumstance occasions, I hope will excuse it. 

1 resume the course I was pursuing, which was to shew that long 
before the subject was brought before the Legislature of this State, and in 
very remote times, the near connection of the waters of the Hudson and 
the Lakes was well understood. 

The historian of the Five Indian Nations informs us, that Governor 
Burnet erected a Fort and trading houses at the mouth of the Onondaga 
River, on account, says he, " of its water communications with the country 
of the Iroquois, and for the facility of transportation between the Lakes 
and Schenectady, there being but three portages in the whole route, and 
two of them very short." These, no doubt, were the carrying places, at 
the Little Falls, the Wood Creek, and at the Oswego Rapids. 

Kalm, a Swede, who travelled in this country in the year seventeen 
hundred and forty eight, speaks of the near approach of the waters of the 
Hudson and the Saint Lawrence. Indeed, he seems to have supposed that 
there was a perfect communication from the former to the latter. 

Carver, who traversed the Lake country in seventeen hundred and 
sixty-six, represents that a water passage between the Mohawk and 
Wood Creek was at that time effected at Fort Stanwix, by sluices. 

In seventeen hundred and sixty-eight, Sir Henry Moore, in a Message 
to the Colonial Assembly, stated that " the obstruction of the navigation 
in the Mohawk River, between Schenectady and Fort Stanwix, occasioned 
by the falls of Conojoharie, had been constantly complained of, and that it 
was obvious to all who were conversant in matters of this kind, that the 
ditficulty could be easily remedied by sluices, upon the plan of those in 
the great Canal of Languedoc in France, which was made to open a com- 
munication between the Atlantic ocean, and the Mediterranean." 

I have made these few references to show that at a very early day, not 
only the Champlain route to Montreal, but what we now call the Ontario 
route to the Lakes, was perfectly well understood ; and that it was well 
known that the water courses running westwardly and northwardly, and 
those running southwardly and eastwardly, were separated by low lands 
of very little extent. Any one that had traversed those portages, or heard 
them described, and knew that artificial water ways had been constructed 
in other parts of the world, must have thought of completing these water 
communications by Canals. 

How much in vain,then,must it be to enquire who first thought of connect- 
ing the western and northern, and southern waters .'' We might as well 
attempt to ascertain who had the first idea of making a highway between New 
York and Albany, or between any other important establishments in our 
country. Many had opportunities of acquiring all the knowledge con- 
nected with the subject, and it is probable that the thought of water 
communications, where they are now made by the Western Inland Lock 
Navigation Company, was common to hundreds at the same time. 

Could we pursue this enquiry with any prospect of success, it would 
be a futile labor. The discovery would be of no benefit to the community, 


and but little more credit would be due to one to whom the original 
thought might be traced, if he did nothing towards executing the idea he 
had conceived, than if it had been a dream. 

The revolutionary war had scarcely been concluded, when Wash- 
ington saw in the improvement of the internal communications of this^ 
country, that, which, after her independence, most concerned her prosperity 
and happiness. The subject had occupied his mind before the revolution, 
we cannot ascertain at how early a date, but it is extremely probable that 
he was among those who first thought of the advantages and practicability 
of navigable water communications between the Lakes and the Atlantic. 
But no sooner had he sheathed his triumphant sword, and assumed the 
station of a private citizen, than he devoted himself to this object. In 
seventeen hundred and eighty-four he personally explored, not only what 
is now the route of the Champlain Canal, but the route which the Western 
Inland Lock Navigation Company adopted for their improvements. That is 
to say, the route by the Mohawk, Wood Creek, Oneida Lake, and Oswego 
River. This part of the life of General Washington, as written by Chief 
Justice Marshal, is so interesting, and so immediately connected with the 
subject which engages our attention, that I am convinced the following 
Extract will be acceptable. 

" To a person looking beyond the present moment, and taking the future 
into view, it is only necessary to glance over the map of the United States, to 
be impressed with the incalculable importance of connecting the western 
with the eastern territory, by facilitating the means of intercourse between 
them. To this subject the attention of General Washington had been in some 
measure directed in the early part of his life. While the American States 
tvere yet British Colonies^ he had obtained the passage of a bill, empower- 
ing those individuals who would engage in the work, to open the PotomaCj 


SO as to render it navigable, from the tide water to Wills' Creek. The River 
James had also been comprehended in his plan ; and he had triumphed so 
far over the opposition produced by local interests and prejudices, that the 
business was in a train which promised success, when the revolutionary war 
diverted the attention of its patrons, and of all America, from internal im- 
provements, to the great objects of liberty and independence. As that war 
approached its termination, subjects, which for a time had yielded their 
pretensions to consideration, reclaimed that place to which their real mag- 
nitude entitled them ; and the internal navigation again attracted the at- 
tention of the wise and thinking part of society. Accustomed to contem- 
plate America as his country, and to consider with solicitude the interests 
of the whole, Washington now took a more enlarged view of the advan- 
tages to be derived from opening both the eastern and western waters : and 
for this, as well as for other purposes, after peace had been proclaimed, 
he traversed the western parts of New England and New York. " I have, 
lately," said he, in a letter to the Marquis of Chastellux, a foreigner, who 
was in pursuit of literary as well as of military fame, " made a tour through 
the Lakes George and Champlain, as far as Crown Point; then returning 
to Schenectady, I proceeded up the Mohawk River to Fort Schuyler, 
crossed over to Wood Creek, which empties into the Oneida Lake, and 
affords the water communication with Ontario : I then traversed the country 
to the head of the eastern banks of the Susquehanna, and viewed the 
Lake Otsego, and the portage between that Lake and the Mohawk 
River at Canajoharie. Prompted by these actual observations, I could 
not help taking a more contemplative and extensive view of the vast inland 
navigation, of these United States, and could not but be struck with the 
immense diffusion and importance of it : and with the goodness of that 
Providence who has dealt his favors to us with so profuse a hand. 
Would to God we may have wisdom enough to improve them ! I shall not 

rest coatented until I have explored the western country, and traversed 


those lines (or great part of them), which have given bounds to a new 

Scarcely had he answered those spontaneous offerings of the heart, 
which, on retiring from the head of the army, flowed in upon hira from every 
part of a grateful nation, when his views were once more seriously turned 
to this truly interesting subject. Its magnitude was also impressed on 
others; and the value of obtaining the aid which his influence and active 
interference Avould afford to any exertions for giving this direction to the 
public mind, and for securing the happy execution of the plan which might 
be devised, was perceived by all those who attached to the great work a 
sufficient degree of importance, and who were anxious for its success. In 
a letter from a gentleman, (Mr. Jefferson,) who had taken an expanded 
view of the subject, who felt an ardent wish for its accomplishment, and 
who relied on funds to be advanced by the public for its execution, a de- 
tailed statement of his ideas was thus concluded : — 

«' But a most powerful objection always arises to propositions of this 
kind. It is, that public undertakings are carelessly managed, and much 
money spent to little purpose. To obviate this objection is the purpose 
of my giving you the trouble of this discussion. You have retired from 
public life. You have weighed this determination, and it would be im- 
pertinence in me to touch it. But would the superintendence of this work 
break in too much on the sweets of retirement and repose .'' If they would, 
I stop here. Your future time and wishes are sacred in my eye. If it 
would be only a dignified amusement to you, what a monument of your 
retirement would it be ! It is one that would follow that of your public 
life, and bespeak it the work of the same great hand. I am confident, that 
would you either alone, or jointly with any persons you think proper, be 
willing to direct this business, it would remove the only objection, the 
weight of which 1 apprehend." 

In the beginning of the autumn of seventeen hundred and eighty-four, 
General Washington made a tour as far west as Pittsburg ; after returnino- 
from which, his first moments of leisure were devoted to tlie task of engag- 
ing his countrymen in a work, which appeared to him, to merit still more 
attention from its political, than from its commercial influence on the Union. 
In a long and interesting letter to Mr. Harrison, then Governor of Virginia, 
he detailed the advantages which might be derived from opening the great 
rivers, the Potomac and the James, as high as should be practicable. After 
stating with his accustomed exactness the distances, and the difficulties to 
be surmounted in bringing the trade of the west to diflerent points on the 
Atlantic, he expressed unequivocally the opinion, that the rivers of 
Virginia afTorded a more convenient, and a more direct course than could 
be found elsewhere, for that rich and increasing commerce. This was 
strongly urged as a motive for immediately commencing the work. But 
the rivers of the Atlantic constituted only a part of the great plan he 
contemplated. He suggested the appointment of commissioners of integ- 
rity and abilities, exempt from the suspicion of prejudice, whose duty it 
should be, after an accurate examination of the James and the Potomac, 
to search out the nearest and best portages, between those waters and the 
streams capable of improvement, which run into the Ohio. Those streams 
were to be accurately surveyed, the impediments to their navigation 
ascertained, and their relative advantages examined. The navigable 
waters, west of the Ohio, towards the great Lakes, were also to be traced 
to their sources, and those which empty into the Lakes to be followed to 
their mouths. " These things being done, and an accurate map of the 
whole presented to the public, he was persuaded that reason would dic- 
tate what was right and proper." For the execution of this latter part 
of his plan he had also much reliance on Congress ; and in addition to 
the general advantages to be drawn from the measure, he labored, in his 
letters to the members of that body, to establish the opinion, that the 

surveys he recommended would add to the revenue, by enhancing the 
value of the lands offered for sale. "Nature," he said, " had made such an 
ample display of her bounties in those regions, that the more the country 
was explored, the more it would rise in estimation." 

The assent and co-operation of Maryland being indispensable to the im- 
provement of the Potomac, he was equally earnest in his endeavours to im- 
press a conviction of its superior advantages on influential individuals in 
that State. In doing so, he detailed the measures which would unquestion- 
ably be adopted by New York and Pennsylvania, for acquiring the monopoly 
of the western commerce, and the difficulty which would be found in di- 
verting it from the channel it had once taken. " I am not," he added " for 
discouraging the exertions of any State to draw the commerce of the 
western country to its sea-ports. The more communications we open to 
it, the closer we bind that rising world (for indeed it may be so called,) to 
our interests, and the greater strength shall we acquire by it. Those 
to whom nature affords the best communications, will, if they are wise, 
enjoy the greatest share of the trade. All I would be understood to mean, 
therefore, is, that tlie gifts of Providence may not be neglected." 

But the light in which this subject would be viewed with most interest, and 
which gave to it most importance, was its political influence on the Union. 
" I need not remark to you. Sir," said he, in his letter to the Governor of 
Virginia, " that the flanks and rear of the United States are possessed by 
other powers — and formidable ones too : nor need I press the necessity of 
applying the cement of interest to bind all parts of the Union together by 
indissoluble bonds — especially of binding that part of it which lies imme- 
diately west of us, to the middle States, For what ties let me ask, should 
we have upon those people, how entirely unconnected with them shall we 
be, and what troubles may we not apprehend, if the Spaniards on their 

right, and Great Britain on their left, instead of throwing impediments in 
their way, as they now do, should hold out lures for their trade and alli- 
ance? When they get strength, which will be sooner than most people 
conceive, what Avill be the consequence of their having formed close 
commercial connexions with both or either of those powers ? It needs 
not, in my opinion, the gift of prophecy to foretell. The western set- 
tlers (I speak now from my own observations,) stand, as it were, upon a 
pivot. The touch of a feather would turn them any way. Until the 
Spaniards (very unwisely I think) threw ditficulties in their way, they 
looked down the Mississippi — and they looked that way for no other 
reason than because they could glide gently down tiie stream, without 
considering, perhaps, the fatigues of the voyage back again, and the time 
necessary for its performance ; and because they have no other means of 
coming to us, but by a long land transportation through unimproved 
roads." Letters of the same import were also addressed to the Governor 
of Maryland, and to other gentlemen in that State. To a member of the 
National Legislature, he observed, "there is a matter which, though it 
does not come before Congress wholly, is, in my opinion of great political 
importance, and ought to be attended to in time. It is to prevent the 
trade of the western territory from settling in the hands either of the 
Spaniards or British. If either of these happen, there is a line of separa- 
tion drawn between the eastern and western country at once, the conse- 
quences of which may be fatal. To tell any man of information how fast 
the latter is settling, how much more rapidly it will settle by means of 
foreign emigrants, who can have no particular predilection for us, of the 
vast fertility of the soil, of the population to which the country is com- 
petent, would be unnecessary : and equally unnecessary would it be to 
observe, that it is by the cement of interest alone we can be held together. 
If then the trade of that country should flow through the Mississippi or 
the Saint Lawrence : if the inhabitants thereof should form commercial 

connexions, which we know lead to intercourses of other kinds, they 
would in a few years be as unconnected with us, as are those of South 
America. It may be asked how are we to prevent this? Happily for us 
the way is plain. Our immediate interests, as well as remote political 
advantages, point to it; whilst a combination of circumstances, render the 
present time more favorable than any other to accomplish it. Extend the 
inland navigation of the eastern waters — communicate them as near as pos- 
sible witli those which run westward; — open these totheOhio; — open also 
such as extend from the Ohio towards Lake Erie, — and we shall not only 
draw the produce of the western settlers, but the peltry and fur trade of 
the Lakes, also to our ports — thus adding an immense increase to our 
exports, and binding those people to us by a chain which can never be 

At about the time that General Washington was exploring that part of 
uur State, which was so well calculated for tlie improvement of internal 
navigation, the attention of the Legislature was directed to the same 
object. Christopher CoUes, an inhabitant of the city of New York, who 
had been previously known for some important but unsuccessful enterprises 
for the public good, and who h id, in the year seventeen hundred and 
seventy-two, given pubhc lectures in Philadelphia, on the subject of lock 
navigation, in seventeen hundred and eighty-four, proposed to the Legisla- 
ture to improve the navigation of the Mohawk. His enterprise was 
thought too mighty for the public resources, but the Legislature gave Mr. 
Colles some encouragement, by ofTering to secure to him and his associates, 
for ever, the profits which might arise from transportation on the river. 
The next year, on the reiterated application of Mr. Colles, the Legislature 
granted him one hundred and twenty-five dollars, to enable him to make 
an essay towards the execution of his plan. This he seems to have done; 
and, ia the same year he published proposals for establishing a company 

to improve the inland navigation between Oswego and Albany. In this 
publication, Mr. Colles very forcibly anticipated all the advantages which 
a water communication with the Lakes would afford. He evinces his 
knowledge of the country, by representing that " the Allegany mountains, 
which pass through all the States, seem to die away as they approach the 
Mohawk River; and the ground," says he, " between the upper part of thife; 
river, and Wood Creek, is perfectly level." 

Mr. Colles was again before the Legislature with his plan, in seventeen 
hundred and eighty-six, and it seems to have met with their approbation ; 
but nothing important or effectual was done by Mr. Colles. He lived till 
within a few years. The dilficulties he met with seem to have subdued 
his enterprise. Though his plan for connecting the northern and southern, 
and eastern and western waters, was revived in seventeen hundred and 
ninety-one, it does not appear that Mr. Colles had any connection with it. 
We may all remember him as the projector and attendant of the telegraph, 
erected during the late war, on Castle Clinton. Genius and talents, 
much above the sphere in which he seems to have moved in the latter 
part of his life, could not rescue him from obscurity and poverty : but it 
would be ungrateful to forget him at this time. No one can say how far 
we owe this occasion, to the ability with which he developed the great 
advantages that would result from opening the communications with the 
Lakes ; to the clear views he presented of the facility with which these 
communications might be made ; and to the activity with which he for 
some time pursued his object. His contemporaries have not be^n insen- 
sible of his merits, and have preserved a portrait of him, by Jartis, in the 
Gallery of the Historical Society. 

Governor George Clinton, in his speech to the Legislature, on opening 
the Session of seventeen hundred and ninety-one, referred to the subject 


of internal improvements in the following language. " Our frontier settle- 
ments, freed from apprehensions of danger, are rapidly increasing, and 
must soon yield extensive resources for profitable commerce. This con- 
sideration forcibly recommends the policy of continuiiig to facilitate the 
means of communication with them, as well to strengthen the bonds of 
society, as to prevent the produce of those fertile districts from being 
diverted to other markets." 

In the same Session the Legislature passed " an act concerning roads 
and inland navigation," by which the commissioners of the land office were 
directed to cause the grounds between the Mohawk River and Wood 
Creek, in Herkemer county, and between Hudson River and Wood Creek, 
in Washington county, to be explored and surveyed. The commissioners 
were also required by the act, to report an estimate of tlie expence of 
making Canals between these points. In the same year, the surveys which 
the act required were made ; and in January, seventeen hundred and 
ninety-two, a report of the commissioners was communicated by George 
Chnton, the then Governor, by a Message, in which he considers the prac- 
ticability of effecting the object of the Legislature, at a very moderate 
expence, as ascertained. He expresses a hope that a measure of such 
importance, not only to the agriculture and commerce of the State, but 
even to the influence of the laws, will continue to demand due attention. 

The Members who appear to have taken the most active part in these 
Legislative transactions, were Mr. Adgate, Mr. Williams, Mr. Livingston, 
and Mr. Barker. 

There were, also, many citizens not in the Legislature, who had pre- 
viously to this time greatly interested themselves in promoting this 
-important measure. These ought to be named on this occasion, but I 


fear 1 have not the information which will enable me to do justice to all. 
General Schuyler deserves to be first mentioned. Distinguished by the force 
and energy of his character, for his abilities, acquirements, and enterprise, 
he was one of the earliest, most strenuous, and most able supporters oi 
improvements in our internal navigation. It has been justly said that he 
was the master spirit which infused hfe and vigour into the whole under- 
taking. Mr. Elkanah Watson had, as early as the year seventeen hundred 
and eighty-eight, attended an Indian treaty at Fort Stanwix. The view, 
he at that time obtained of the country, impressed him with the 
practicability and advantages of the water communications which Mr, 
CoUes had, several years previously, explored and described in his publi- 
cation above noticed. Of Mr. CoUes's proceedings Mr. Watson appears 
to have had no knowledge. Mr. Watson transcribed the ideas he 
entertained on this subject, in a journal he kept at the time, extracts from 
which he published in eighteen hundred and twenty, in a work entitled, 
" A History of the Rise, Progress, and existing Condition of the Western 
Canals." This publication is avowedly made by Mr. Watson, with a view 
to vindicate his claims " to the exclusive honor of projecting the Canal 
pohcy" of the State of New York. 

In the same year that the act of the twenty-first of March, seventeen hun- 
dred and ninety-one, was passed, for surveying the contemplated routes, 
Mr. Watson made a journey in the western part of the State. All his 
views of the water communications (which had been previously proposed 
by Mr. CoUes) were confirmed and strengthened, and he employed his 
pen in writing and publishing essays, which, no doubt, had an important 
influence on public opinion in favour of Canals. He also published, in 
the work last referred to, his journal of this tour. 

Thes^ private jourfi^fe of Mt. Watson, by soitte meians unknown to 
hini, as he sfates in the pveliminary remarks to his History of the CanalsV 
were obtained by the London bookseHers, and pubHshed by them, pre- 
viously to seventeen hundred and ninety five ; and were, to the astonish*- 
ment 6f Mr. Watson, referred to by Mr, Philhps, in his History of Canals; 
the first edition of which #as piiblished about thirty years ago. 

In consequence of the favorable rfepOrt of the commissioners, appointed 
by the act of seventeen hundred and ninety-one, and the recommendations 
of the Governor, the act of seventeen hundred and ninety-two, by which 
the Western Inland Lock Navigation Company, and the Northern Inland 
Lock Navigation Company were incorporated, was passed. This act, it is 
said, was drawn ty General Schuyler. He, and about fifty others of the most 
respectable and influential citizens of the State were members of the 
company. Mr. Thomas Eddy, who Was an early, zealous, and active 
friend bf internal navigation, was not named in the act, but was elected a 
member arid director the ySar after thfe cbmpany was incorporated. General 
Schuyler was chosen President , and he. Messieurs Eddy, Jeremiah Van 
Rensselaer, Barent Bleecker, Elkanah Watson, and Robert Bowne, were 
among the most active members. 

The object of the AVesttern lillaftd Lock Navigation Company was to 
iiflprove thte navigation, and to Open cbmmuniieatibns, by Canals, to the 
Seneca Lake, and Lake Ontario. The other company was empowered to 
open a lock navigation bet\Veen the Hudson and Lake Champlain, This 
latteir Company did something to improve the navigation of the natural 
Water (ibWstes tb the nortb, but was dissolved without having made any 
Canal, and without having effected aiiy thing of g1?eat importance. 


So Herculean, a tesk did' it then appear to construct a Ganal, that the 
Western Company were allowed fifteen years to accomplish tlieir work ; 
thoughi it was known that the Canalling which tliey would have to perform 
would extend only a few miles. 

But the company did not avail themselves of this long indulgence. 
In the year seventeen hundred and ninety-six, they completed the Canal 
at the Little Falls, of about two miles and three-fourths in length, with five 
locks; aad a Canal of one mile and a quarter at the German Flats ; and 
in seventeen hundred and ninety-seven, a Canal from the Mohawk to 
Wood Creek, of one mile and three quarters : in all less than seven miles, 
with nine locks. Some years afterwards they constructed several wooden 
locks on Wood Creek. All the works which are above enumerated, 
and which, at the time, were thought very great, and which were so many 
years completing, might now be done in six weeks. Our great canals with 
all their locks, aqueducts, culverts, bridges, and every thing that belongs 
to them, have been executed at the rate of more than a mile in a week. 

The Western Company after their principal works had been con- 
structed and once rebuilt, when it was found that they must be again re- 
constructed, obtained the assistance of Mr. Weston, an engineer, from 
Europe, of eminence in his profession. He buiU the existing lopks of the 
Western Company. When their improvements were so far completed as 
that a boat might pass from Schenectady into the Oneida Lake, they had 
expended more than four hundred thousand dollars. This great expendi- 
ture obliged them to charge such heavy t^lls, that their Canals were but 
little ■ijsed ; land carriage, and the natural rivers, b/eing generally preferred. 

The old locks, at the Falls, now form part of a communication from 
the Erie Canal, into the Mohawk River. When we stand on the lofty 


and magnificent stone aqueduct which is thrown over the Falls, or on the 
terrace which supports the western Canal, — midway the precipitous rocks 
on the south side of the river, we look down on the old Canal, passing 
below the new structure, creeping at our feet, through its narrow channel 
j^nd straightened locks. 

At this point there is a combination of the beauties of nature and of 
art, seldom to be met with. When the latter excite the admiration of an 
American citizen, he must find, blended with his feelings, something of 
pride arising from the reflection that their existence is owing entirely to 
the genius of his countrymen. 

The prospect of a water communication from the Hudson to Lake 
Ontario suggested the advantages of a like communication from that Lake 
to Lake Erie. With a view to the establishment of this desirable object, 
an act was passed in seventeen hundred and ninety-eight, incorporating the 
Niagara Company. 

The design of those who formed this association, was to make a Canal, 
with locks, round the cataract of Niagara. 

This project, in preference to that which has been executed, has had 
its advocates till a very late day. It is impossible to say, when we are 
looking for the dawnings of the idea of an artificial water coreimunication 
between Lake Erie and the Hudson, whether those who first anticipated 
such a connexion, and have mentioned it in their writings, did not con- 
template this as the route by which the communication would be effected, 
rather than that it would be made on the line occupied by the Canal which 
now exists. 


But this act of seventeen hundred and ninetj-eiglit, and the project of 
locking the Great Falls, to which it was intended to give etTect, 
seem very convincing proofs, that, up to this time, no person had thought 
of an inland lock navigation, directly from Lake Erie to the Hudson. 
Indeed, I may say, that up to the time when tliis act was passed, I have 
not found, in any thing written upon the subject, a single syllable inti- 
mating that the idea of such a Canal had been conceived by any human 
being. It unquestionably had not entered into the minds of either of 
the companies incorporated in seventeen hundred and ninety-two. The 
views of the Western Inland Lock Navigation Company, certainly, 
extended no further than to improve the natural water-courses between 
the mouth of the Onondaga River and the Mohawk, and to connect them 
by the short cuts whicli were necessary for that purpose. To use Mr. 
Watson's own expressions, who was one of the Western Company, " the 
utmost stretch of their views was to follow the track of nature's Canal, 
and to remove natural or artificial obstructions ; but they never enter- 
tained the most distant conception of a Canal from Lake Eric to the 
Hudson. They would not have considered it," continues Mr. Watson, 
" much more extravagant to have suggested the possibihty of a Canal to 
the moon.*' 

The etForts of this company, on the Mohawk, had proved so expen- 
sive, and so little encouraging, that they shrunk from an attempt to com- 
plete their original design, by extending their work to Lake Ontario. In 
eighteen hundred and eight, they surrendered so much of their grant as 
gave them any privileges beyond the Oneida Lake. And, subsequently, 
when the Legislature had determined on executing the northern and 
western Canals, they ceded to the State, for a sum much less than they 
had expended, all their privileges and works. 


But, although, those a\ ho were connected with these navigation compa- 
nies, and who encouraged and promoted the objects of these associations, 
cannot justly claim, indeed never have claimed, the merit of projecting 
the great Canals, yet we should do them great injustice did we not ac- 
knowledge that we owe a great deal to their genius and enterprise. Their 
ill success, it is true, for some time damped the spirit of improvement, 
yet their efTorts roused the public attention, and induced inquiries and 
investigations which have led to the great works, the accompUshment of 
which we are about to celebrate. 

The very peculiar character of the country about our great Lakes was 
very early known. It was seen that the Saint Lawrence, the Lakes, and 
the Mississippi, lay in a great valley, extending from the Bay of Labrador, 
to the Gulf of Mexico. 

Monsieur de la Salle, who, in the year sixteen hundred and sixty-nine, 
first explored the Mississippi from the Lakes, found that the waters of 
Lake Michigan, and of th:^ rivers which run to the south, nearly approx- 
imated. It was afterwards ascertained that at certain seasons they were 
united, and that the intervening waters might be navigated by boats of 
considerable burthen. The near approach of the western waters of this 
State and of Lake Erie, was also conjectured, if not known, at a very 
early day. In the Report before mentioned, made by the Surveyor General 
of the Province of New York to Governor Burnet, in seventeen hundred 
and twenty-four, after having mentioned the communication into Lake 
Ontario by the Onondnga River, he says : — " Besides the passage by the 
Lakes, there is a river which comes from the country of the Senekas, and 
falls into the Onondaga River, by which we have an easy carriage into 
the country, without going near the Cataraqui Lake. The head of this 
river goes near the Lake Erie, and probably may give a very near passage 


into that Lake, and much more advantageous than the way the French are 
obhged to take by the great falls of Jagara."' 

It must be recollected that these, or similar passages, are not cited to 
prove that there were in the minds of the authors, ideas of a Canal over 
the routes to which they refer ; but the object in noticing these specula- 
tions is, to shew that, when Canals became afterwards more known and 
practised, such descriptions of the country and its waters, may very 
naturally have suggested the possibility of making Canals in situations so 
well adapted to them. These ideas might, and probably did, arise in the 
minds of many contemporaneously; and that, therefore, it would be vain 
to endeavour to discover who first suggested the practicability of making 
the western Canal; upon which so much is now said, only because it has 
heretofore been a subject of such earnest inquiry and discussion. 

We have seen, from the pamphlet published by Christopher Colles, in 
seventeen hundred and eighty-five, that as early as at that day, the ex- 
traordinary adaptation of the country, on our western borders, for water 
communications, had been perceived. His expression that "the Allegany 
mountains died away, as they approached the Mohawk," shews that he 
had some idea of the path which nature has provided for the great western 
Canal. It was known too, long before that project was undertaken, that 
the waters of Lake Erie, lying above the Great Falls, must be higher than 
the waters of the Hudson. In a communication from Mr. Charles Thomp- 
son, who was so long Secretary of the Continental Congress, to Mr. JefTer- 
son, which the latter has appended to his Notes on Virginia, published in 
seventeen hundred and eighty-seven, Mr. Thompson supposes, that if the 
barriers of the Niagara River were, by any convulsion of nature, to be torn 
asunder, the country below would be deluged. 


It must have been seen, also, that many of the interior Lakes were 

so high, that their outlets traversed the path whicli the Canal now 

It is worth while to stop here to remark, that the location of several of 
these minor Lakes, gives a character to our western Canal, which is very 
peculiar. Generally, Canals have been made to form connections over 
ridges, dividing seas, or natural navigable channels, and commonly pass 
near the sources of the water-courses by which the Canals are to be sup- 
plied, and, therefore, one of the greatest difficulties in their construction, 
and one that frequently leads to enormous expences, is to obtain a suffi- 
cient supply of water, and to economise that element. But our western 
Canal passes through a valley, and intercepts, near their points of dis- 
charge into the great Lakes, water-courses, supplied by inexhaustible 
sources, and owing to the supplies being drawn from natural reservoirs, of 
great magnitude, it has not been necessary to construct an artiiicial one, 
for either of the Canals, through their whole extent of more than four 
hundred miles. 

These very extraordinary features of our country, would very pro- 
bably suggest to any person acquainted with them, the idea of making 
water communications over the grounds which are noAv occupied by the 
Canals. As the country was cleared of forests, and became inhabited, its 
topography was better known, and very probably from a suggestion that 
a continued Canal from Lake Erie to the Hudson, (in which the person 
who made it may have had no confidence,) the subject has been revolved 
in the minds of man} , till it was found deserving consideration, and finally, 
to be worthy of serious examination ; the favorable result of which led to 
the determination to execute the project. 


No one seems to have had an earher or a more vivid conception of the 
features of the country, between the Hudson and the western Lakes, which 
fitted it so pecuHarly for Canal navigation, than the late Mr. Gouverneur 
Morris. The Lakes, the rivers, the valhes in which they he ; the advan- 
tages and profit to be derived from extensive inland water communications, 
and their pohtical influence, were subjects suited to the great mind of Mr. 
Morris, and inspired those enthusiastic anticipations which his pen has 
left us. 

Previously to the year eighteen hundred, he does not appear to have 
had any definite idea of a Canal extending beyond Lake Ontario. In a 
letter of that time, to Mr. Lee, he seems to fix that as the point to which 
he thought it was practicable to open a Canal. But at about the same 
period, in a letter to an European correspofident, he expresses his belief 
in the practicability of enabling ships to sail from London, through the 
Hudson, into Lake Erie. 

In eighteen hundred and three, in a conversation with Simeon De Witt, 
Esquire, the present Surveyor General, who deserves to be ranked 
among the early and zealous friends of the Canals, Mr. Morris spoke of 
the possibility of "tapping Lake Erie." But yet it is very uncertain 
whether Mr. Morris's idea was, at these times, that a Canal might be 
made directly from the Hudson to that Lake. He might have con- 
ceived, that a ship from London would sail into Ontario by the 
Canal, which had then been so long thought of; and from thence, 
into Erie by the locks round the Falls, which were contemplated by the 
act of seventeen hundred and ninety-four : and he might have conceived 
the possibility of tapping Lake Erie, by leading its waters in the same course. 
But, subsequently, and particularly at about the time the project of mak- 

ing a Ca,nal from Lake Erie to the Hudson, first attracted the attention 
of the Legislature, Mr. Morris became one of its most active and able 

In eighteen hundred and seven, Mr. Jefferson, then President of the 
United States, proposed to Congress to devote so much of the national 
revenue, as the exigencies of the government did not require, which he 
calculated would be very large, to making roads and Canals. That part 
of the Message of the President, which related to these subjects, was 
referred to the Secretary of the Treasury, Mr. Gallatin, who, in eighteen 
hundred and eight, made a very able report; but the possibility of aGanal, 
ffom Lake Erie to the Hudson, had not occurred to him; or, if it had, he 
did not perceive its advantages so far as to be induced to mention it 
among those which he recommended, as deserving tlie consideration of the 

This Message of the President was well calculated to awaken the 
attention of t)je respectivje States, to thfr advantages, they possessed for 
internal navigation. ^J,,: ^1 ,;t. .^v 

: ";' c :- . 

Mr. Jesse Hawley, in the fall of eighteen hundred and seven, published 
a number of pieces under the signature of " Hercules," in which he advo- 
cated, with great ability and force, the construction of a Canal from Buf- 
falo to Utica, and proposed very nearly the same route which is now 
occupied by the western Canal We cannot doubt but that thesQ able 
essays had a great influence on the pubHc mind. 

Mr. Geddes, who, from the beginning, has had so large and active a part 
in planning ai:id executing the Canals, in the year eighteen hundred and 


eight, intimated, that it tvas the opinion of iflany, that a Canal might be 
made from Erie to Rome. Mr. Elliot, who was afterwards one of the 
conrmiissioners, in a letter to the Surveyor General, written in July, 
eighteen hundred and eight, very strongly recommends a communication 
to Lake Erie, in preference to the Ontario route. 

In the Session of eighteen hundred and eight, Mr. Joshua Forman, a 
Member of the Assembly from Onondaga county, proposed, iii that body, 
a concurrent resolution to direct a survey to be made •' of the most eligible 
and direct route of a Canal, to open a communication between the tide 
waters of the Hudson River and Lake Erie." This is the first Legislative 
proceeding, of which there is any trace, that had reference to a Canal 
from the Hudson to Lake Erie. 

This resolution was adopted, and subsequently, by a joint resolution pro- 
posed by Mr. Gould, in the Senate, the Surveyor General was directed to 
cause the survey, contemplated by Mr Forman's resolution, to be made; 
but BO limited were the views the Legislature, at this time, had of 
the great work in which they were about to engage, that they appropriated 
for the object of the resolution, no more than the sum of six hundred 

The Surveyor General employed Mr. Geddes, who has been before 
mentioned, to make this survey. He performed the duty with great intel- 
ligence ; and in January, eighteen hundred and nine, made a report in 
favour of the practicability of a route, directly from Lake Erie, which 
evinces how fortunately the agent had been selected. 

Mr. Geddes conceived the possibility of running the Canal on the tops 
of the ridges which occupy the Irondequot valley; a project which 


would not have occurred to any but an engineer of great boldness and 


Mr. Geddes's report was made to the Surveyor General, and was by 
him communicated to the Legislature. But nothing appears to have been 
done, till in March, eighteen hundred and ten, when Jonas Piatt, Esquire, then 
a member ot the Senate, who has been among the foremost, on so many 
occasions, to encourage and support this great enterprise, proposed, in that 
body, a resolution which was unanimously adopted by the Senate, and 
concurred in by the Assembly, to appoint Gouverneur Morris, Stephen Van 
Rensselaer, William North, Thomas Eddy, and Peter B. Porter, " commis- 
sioners to explore the whole route for inland navigation, from the Hudson 
River to Lake Ontario, and to Lake Erie." 

The Legislature had before them, at that Session, memorials from 
many citizens in different parts of the State, representing that Canada was 
attracting the greatest part of our internal commerce, in consequence of 
the facilities which were afforded by water communications, to transport 
commodities to her markets. These representations, no doubt, had their 
influence, but the above resolution, it appears, was brought forward by 
Judge Piatt, at this time, on the suggestion of Mr. Thomas Eddy, the gen- 
tleman before mentioned, who had taken so active and leading a part in the 
concerns of the Inland Lock Navigation Companies, and who was so long 
the zealous and active friend of the Canals. Judge Piatt and Mr. Eddy 
engaged our present Governor, De Witt Clinton, who was then also a mem- 
ber of the Senate, to support Mr. Piatt's proposition. From that time, 
Mr. Clinton has been the able, constant, indefatigable, and undaunted advo- 
cate and supporter of these great works. 

They also found, at about this time, an able advocate in the late Doctor 
Hugh Williamson. 

The memory of this distinguished citizen will be preserved, not only 
by his History of North Carolina, and other works which he published, 
but by a Biographical Memoir, written by Doctor David Hosack. 

Doctor Williamson, in eighteen hundred and ten, wrote an essay, en- 
titled "Observations on Navigable Canals ;" also, " Observations on (he 
Means of preserving the Commerce of New York;" and, "Additional 
Observations on Navigable Canals;'' all of which had reference to the 
Canals of New York, and are preserved in the Medical and Philosophical 
Register. In the Biography Doctor Hosack remarks, that " Doctor ^^'il- 
liamson was among the first of our citizens who entertained correct views 
as to the practicability of forming a Canal to connect the waters of Lake 
Erie with Hudson River; and the importance of this great work so 
engaged his feelings, that besides the papers already mentioned on Canal 
navigation, he published a series, on the same subject, under the signature 
of Atticus. These papers were so well received, that many thousand 
copies have been circulated through the medium of newspapers, and the 
pamphlet has itself been several times reprinted."' 

In the summer of eighteen hundred and ten, the above named commis- 
sioners explored the whole route, from the Hudson to Lake Erie ; and, at 
the Session of eighteen hundred and eleven, they made their first report, 
which was drawn up by Mr. Morris, who acted as President of the Board. 

It proposed a project which, although the report was signed by all the 
commissioners, it is understood was entirely his own. It was to bring 



the waters of the Lake on one continued uninterrupted plane, with an in- 
clination of six inches in every mile, to a basin, to be formed near the 
margin of the Hudson, from whence there was to be a descent by a great 
number of locks. This project was thought by many to be impracticable ; 
and its having been presented as a plan, which the commissioners recom- 
mended, was calculated to retard the enterprise ; but the report bears 
testimony to the genius, and the eloquence of tiie writer. 

Immediately on the receipt of this report, Mr. Clinton brought in a 
bill, which was passed on the eighth of April, eighteen hundred and eleven. 
This was the first law passed on the subject of the great Canals. It 
added Robert R. Livingston, and Robert Fulton, to the former commis- 
sioners, and charged the Board with the consideration of all matters re- 
lating to the navigation between the Hudson and the Lakes. It authorised 
them to apply to other States, and to Congress for co-operation and aid ; to 
ascertain if loans could be procured; and to treat with the Inland Lock 
Navigation Companies, for a surrender of their rights and interests. 

The Legislature was induced to give the commissioners power to apply 
to Congress, because reliance was placed on receiving the assistance which 
the message of Mr. JetFerson, of eighteen hundred and seven, and the 
report of ?vlr. Galhuin, although he had not mentioned the Erie Canal, 
seemed to promise to enterprises of this nature. 

The commissioners, pursuant to the powers given them hj the last 
mentioned act, applied, in the ensuing year, to the general Govern- 
ment, to afford some aid to a project, no less interesting to the nation, 
than to the Stale in which it was to be executed. Two of the commis- 
sioners, Mr, Morris and Mr. Clinton, attended at the seat of the National 
Government, to promote the success of this application. It was not re- 

jected, but it met with no gr«at favor. It was tliought that nothing could 
be done for New York, that was not done for the other States, and the 
negociation of the commissioners ended in a proposition brought before 
the House of Representatives, by a committee of that body, to appropriate 
to each State certain portions of the pubhc lands, to be appUed by the 
respective States, to the improvements of their internal communications. 
But the Bill reported by the committee, was never acted upon in the 

There was at that time, however, no question but that Congress had 
power to afibrd assistance, if it were their pleasure to do so ; and there 
was no little disappointment when, in eighteen hundred and seventeen, it 
was understood that Mr. Madison conceived that the constitution would 
not permit an appropriation of any part of the national lunds or means to 
these purposes. 

This disappointment was the greater, because no objection had been 
made by the Executive, to several Acts of Congress, appropriating very 
large sums of money, for making a road through parts of Maryland, ^'ir^fi- 
nia, and Pennsylvania, and for similar objects elsewhere, it was not very 
well understood how the Constitution could allow an appropriation for 
roads, and not permit it for a water highway. 

But most happily for us, this objection prevailed so long as the State 
of New York needed tiie aid of tlie General Government; and most 
happily for every other State in the Union, these scruples have since en- 
tirely subsided. We have been so fortunate as to complete our Canals 
without any extraneous aid, and we are gratified that the other States, in 
enterprises similar to ours, will be aided by funds from the National 
Treasury, and will liave the assistance of the distinguished foreigners and 

natives, who are employed in the engineering departments of the General 

But we have yet one humble petition to make to Congress. That 
having made our Canals without their interference, they will be pleased to 
leave us to enjoy them : and that they will not sanction any such preten- 
sion, as was of late made by some of their reverme officers, that our Canal 
boats, traversing our hills and vallies, in an artificial channel made by 
ourselves, entirely within our own territory, hundred of miles from the sea, 
and six or seven hundred feet above its level, were engaged in the coasting 
trade of the United States ; that they must therefore take custom-house 
licences, and pay a tax to the General Government. 

An Act of Congress has been passed, exempting boats employed wholly 
on the Canals from the necessity of paying this tax, yet the claim of a right 
to impose it seems to be reserved. But so long as any respect for State 
sovereignties remains ; so long as the confederacy is considered of any 
value, and so long as there is any regard for the peace of the Union, it is 
hoped there Avill be no attempt to enforce this, or any similar claim. 

The Canal commissioners, pursuant to the authority given to them by 
the Act of eighteen hundred and eleven, made application to other States, 
and among them to our younger sisters, Vermont, Kentucky, and Ohio, 
proposing to them that, as they would enjoy the benefits of the contem- 
plated improvements in the means of internal communication, they would 
also participate in the expence ? We are not aware that any answer to 
this invitation of the commissioners was returned by any State but Ohio. 
She made a vei'y kind and complimentary answer, in the form of a Resolu- 
tion of her Legislature. The substance of which was, that we had her 
best wishes ; that she knew very well she would be greatly benefited if 


our enterprise should be executed, bat that she was well assured we could 
do it ourselves ; that she was very young and not rich ; she. however, 
testified her disposition to serve us so far as her resources would justifv. if 
she approved, when made knoun to her, the plan we proposed to 

Fortunately we have had no occasion to reraiml Ohio of this enea^e- 
ment, and every firiend of internal improvements, must rejoice that no 
part of her resources have been diverted from the great work in which 
she is now so nobly engaged. When it is accomplished, as undoubtedly it 
will be. in a very short time, she need not fear to compare it with any thing 
of the same nature which has been achieved in this or any other part of 
the world. When it is considered that the population of her territory in 
seventeen hundred and ninety, did not exceed three thousand souls, her 
Canal, when it is completed, will be a stronger evidence, than the world has 
yet atforded, of what can be done by the moral energies of a free people, 
guided by wise, enterprisir^, and magnanimous counsellors. 

By opening a channel between Lake Erie and the trans-Allegany na- 
vigable waters, Ohio will render us infinitely a greater service than she 
could have done by any contribution to our funds. She will not lav out a 
dollar on her Canal, that will not be nearly of as much advantage to us as 
to hersel£ It would be to our interest to open the communication on which 
Ohio is now engaged, at our own expence. and to let it be a fi-ee passao-e, 
rather tlian it should not be done. We could not employ the large surplus 
funds, which our Canals will afford, more to our own advantage, than by 
anticipating them, and making loans to Ohio, if she should need such 



When there is a Canal communication between the waters of the Ohio 
and the Lakes, a person may travel in a vessel from New Orleans to New 
York, and pass the Allegany mountains by water. 

Had this been predicted only ten years ago, and the prediction been 
credited, Ave should have looked for some great convulsion of nature, by 
which the lands and the waters on the face of the earth would be displaced. 
It would never have been beheved that the hands of man could effect so 
mighty a change. 

It is not only Ohio that our example has stimulated and our success en- 
couraged, but every State in the Union is projecting artificial water commu- 
nications. Our interest, as well as our feelings, are united in our wishes for 
their success. We do not forget that the State of New York is but a member of 
the great political family, and that our welfare is intimately connected with 
the prosperity of the whole. But as respects our own particular interest, we 
must wish to promote the improvement of inland navigation in every part 
of the Union; for it is certain that no Canal can be opened in the United 
States, which will not be a benefit to us. Howe\er remote, it will 
be a channel through which commerce will be attracted by our great em- 
porium, the local situation of which precludes a rival. If any part of the 
produce of our own State should be drawn from us, it will be because 
elsewhere it will find a more profitable market. The object of all our im- 
provements is the advantage of our citizens, and if some should find the 
greatest profit in trading to places without our territory, yet it must be for 
the general good of the State; the prosperity of which depends on the wel- 
fare of its inliabitants. If communities can be so connected as that no 
jealousies or separate interests can arise between them, the Ohio and New 
York Canals are bonds that will unite these two States in perpetual amity. 

In eighteen hundred and twelve a second report was made hy the Board 
of Commissioners, to the Legislature. And at that Session an Act was 
passed, authorising the commissioners to borrow, on the credit of the State, 
five millions of dollars, to be applied to the execution of the Catials. 

From this time, till the conclusion of tlio late war with Groat Britain, 
little appears to have been done towards carrying into ertect the then 
existing Canal laws. But in the mean time, that is, in March, eighteen 
hundred and fourteen, the commissioners presented another report, in 
which they reiterated their opinion that the Canals were practicable ; that 
the State could command competent resources, and warmly urged the exe- 
cution of the project. The attention of the Legislature, however, was en- 
grossed by the then existing war. In consequence of the disarrangement 
of the national finances, the State of New York was obliged to employ its 
funds on objects which properly belonged to the general Government ; and 
besides, a very considerable opposition had arisen to the improvement of 
our inland navigation, upon the great scale which the commissioners 
had proposed. Many believed in the impracticability of the project; 
others, who admitted that it might be accomplished, thought the work too 
mighty for the power and resources of the State. 

It was also unpropitious to the adoption of the great design, that the 
friends of improvements in internal navigation diflfered in opinion as to the 
course which ought to be pursued ; some thinking that the Ontario route, 
which has been before explained, should he preferred to carrying the Canal 
directly to Lake Erie. Under the influence of these feelings and opinions, 
the Legislature, in the Session of eighteen hundred and fourteen, n^pealed 
that p irt of the then existing law, which empowered the commissioners to 
borrow five millions of dollars. 


However dissatisfied the friends of the Canals were with this repeal, 
it has turned out to be one of those measures which though they appeared 
unpropitious at the time, we now see were most fortunate. The war pre- 
vented the employment of a foreign engineer and the repeal in ques- 
tion, prevented our making loans abroad. The consequence of this last 
measure has been, that every cent borrowed on account of the Canals 
was obtained of our oAvn citizens, and the interest is paid to them, or to 
foreigners who have purchased the stock at an advance. 

Perhaps the war itself, discouraging as were its immediate effects, may 
be set down as one of those events which finally had a tendency to pro- 
mote the commencement and execution of the Canals. The want of a 
practicable communication, for the conveyance of material of war, from the 
sea-board to the western frontier, was grievously felt. It has been said 
that the expence of transporting cannon from Albany to the Lakes, was 
at one time, more than double what the pieces cost. The postponement 
of the project for a few years was also fortunate, inasmuch as it brought 
the commencement and execution of it to a time when money could be more 
easily obtained, and on better terms, than it could have been at, perhaps, 
any prior, or hitherto, subsequent period. 

The retraction of the power to make loans for a time abated the zeal 
for improvements in inland navigation. The commissioners made no 
report in eighteen hundred and fifteen. 

But the spirit which had been hushed by the clamours of war, was 
again heard when peace was restored. At the instigation of Mr. Eddy, 
.Judge Piatt, Mr. Clinton. Mr. John Pintard, and some others, a few re- 


spectable and influential citizens were convened, in New York, in the 
latter part of the year eighteen hundred and fifteen. 

This meeting appointed a committee to draw a memorial to the Legis- 
lature in favor of the projected inland navigation. 

The duty assigned to this committee was performed by their chairman. 
Mr. Clinton, who prepared what has been distinguished, and will always 
be remembered, in the history of the Canals, as the New York memorial. 
Its presentation formed an epocha in the progress of these works, from 
which their earnest and active pursuit maybe dated. Their practicability, 
usefulness, and advantages, were stated with so much clearness, ability. 
force, and eloquence, that, from that time, all opposition was unavailing. 
Petitions of the same character, from different parts of the State, and 
signed by many thousand citizens, were presented at the ensuing Session 
of the Legislature. 

Governor Tompkins, in his opening speech, recommended the subject 
to the attention of the two Houses. The commissioners made a report in 
favor of an immediate commencement of the work. While they adverted 
to the great western Canal, as an undertaking which combined the honor, 
interest, and political eminence of the State, they expressed their convic- 
tion of the expediency of adopting measures to connect the waters of 
Champlain with the Hudson. 

It appears, that previously to this time, there had been no thought that 
our own country could furnish engineers of sufficient ability, science, and 
experience, to execute a work which, in this State, was entirely new. The 
ill success of the first Inland Lock Navigation Companies was calculated 
to give us very humble opinions as to the requisite talents of our citizens. 


But it has been the good fortune of this country, whether in war or in 
peace, to find men rising from her soil adequate to every emergency. Of 
this, the execution of these Canals, surpassed in no respect by any on 
earth, is a striking example. When we see them, or read their history, the 
letlection, that none but native American citizens have had any share in 
devising, planning, or superintending, any part of the work, must add to 
our gratification. We may hope that in time it will be questioned whether 
the opinion be correct, which has been promulgated by some European 
philosophers, and seems yet to be entertained by some trans-atlantic 
statesmen and reviewers, that the human species, by transportation to the 
new world, has degenerated in mental faculties and physical powers. 

The commissioners, under the common impression that they would be 
obliged to look abroad for assistance, sought in Europe a civil engineer. 
Had it not been for the intervention of the war, one they had engaged 
would have shared the credit which is due to Wright, Geddes, White, 
Thomas, Roberts, and Briggs. Indeed, it seems that the acting commis- 
sioners. Messieurs Holley, Young, Seymour, and Bouck, discharged, in a 
great degree, duties which would properly belong to engineers ; while, at 
the same time, they were united with the other commissioners, in the gene- 
ral direction and superintendence of the works. 

In one of tlieir former reports the commissioners mentioned that an 
English engineer had been engaged, but they now stated that their in- 
quiries, and the intercourse they had had with many of our citizens in 
exploring the routes of the Canals, and making surveys, had induced them 
to believe, that it was not necessary to go from home to seek the requisite 
talents and qualifications ; and in their report of tliis year (eighteen hun- 
dred and siAteei ,) they express their disposition, in giving their employ- 

ments, to prefer our own citizens. This report was signed by Mr. Van 
Rensselaer, Mr. Clinton, Mr. De Witt, Mr. North, Mr. Eddy, Mr. Porter, 
and by Mr. Charles D. Cooper, who had been appointed by Governor 
Tompkins, to fill a vacancy in the board, occasioned by the death of Robert 
R. Livingston, Esquire. Mr. Morris did not sign the Report, because, it 
has been said, he was dissatisfied that his idea of an inclined plane, was in 
a great measure abandoned. The signature of one other commissioner 
was wanting — that of Robert Fulton, who died in the month of February, 
in the preceding year. 

It is impossible to refer to the deaths of Mr. Livingston, and Mr. Ful- 
ton, without wishing to pay some tribute to their memories. It is particu- 
larly due to them upon this occasion, because they were zealous promoters 
of the great enterprises, the completion of which we are about to cele- 
brate. Mr. Fulton's opinions had the more weight, as it was well known 
that he was professedly a civil engineer, and had published a valuable 
work on internal navigation. His great success in the application of steam 
to propel vessels, which has given him immortality, added to the influence 
of his character, — his plain, unpretending, Franklin-like style of writing, 
was well suited to the occasion, — his correspondence with Mr. Morris, 
published on the incipiency of the project, had as much influence in dis- 
posing the public mind to favor the great national work, which, to use his 
own expressions, " is to secure wealth, ease, and happiness to millions," 
as any thing that has been written on the subject. So much was he in 
favor of Canals, that, in a letter to Mr. Morris, he enters into calculations, 
Avhich appear to demonstrate that the merchandize, transported in sloops 
on the Hudson, might be conveyed on a Canal between New York and 
Albany for less than they can be carried on the river, including in the 
estimate the cost of the Canal. 


But it does not always please Providence that the benefactors of man- 
kind shall live to share the fruits of their labors. Their reward is in the 
contemplation of the happiness they will be the means of transmitting to 
posterity, or, perhaps, it is, in being permitted to look down upon the en- 
joyments of the beings whom they have benefited. If so, we may believe 
that the spirits of Morris, of Schuyler, of Livingston, and of Fulton, will 
be with us when we celebrate an event which they contributed so much 
to produce. 

The same incredulity as to the practicability of the western Canal, and 
the same apprehensions as to the capacity of the State continued to raise 
an opposition in the Legislature. Many attempts were made to arrest, or 
at least to curtail and postpone the project ; but the opposition was un- 
availing. The Act of eighteen hundred and sixteen, to provide for the 
improvement of the internal navigation of the State, was passed in the 
Assembly, by a majority of seventy-three ; and in the Senate, by a majo- 
rity of thirteen. 

By this Act Mr. Van Rensselaer, Mr. Clinton, Mr. Young, Mr. Ellicot, 
and Mr. HoUey, were appointed commissioners. They were empowered 
to devise and adopt measures to eflTect communications, by Canals, be- 
tween the Hudson and Lake Erie, and Lake Champlain, and to appoint 
engineers. Twenty thousand dollars were appropriated for the necessary 
expences of executing the Act ; but no power was given to the commis- 
sioners to begin the work. On the contrary, a clause, which was in the 
bill to that efTect when it was first reported, was stricken out. 

The commissioners met in the city of New York, in May, eighteen 
hundred and sixteen. They appointed Mr. Clinton, President; Mr. 

Young, Secretary of the Board, and Mr. Holley, their Treasurer. They 
divided the Erie Canal line into the western, middle, and eastern sec- 
tions. The first, extending from the Lake to Seneca River ; the middle, 
from thence to Rome ; and the eastern, from Rome to Albany : and ap- 
pointed engineers to each section. An engineer was also appointed to 
survey a route, which had been proposed for the Canals on the south side 
of the mountain ridge. This route had many advocates, but was finally 

Previously to the commencement of the session of eighteen hundred 
and seventeen, the commissioners, or some of them, with the assistance 
of the respective engineers, had explored the routes of both the Canals, 
and had caused them to be surveyed and marked. 

When the Legislature met. a Report was presented, of great length 
and minuteness, with profiles and maps. The Report also submitted 
estimates ; those for the western Canal amounted nearly to five millions 
of dollars, and those for the northern Canal to about nine hundred thou- 
sand. These estimates have been exceeded, but it is owing to the Canals 
having been enlarged; to the substitution of stone, in many instances, 
where wood was contemplated ; and to some unforeseen difficulties ; par- 
ticularly at the mountain ridge, in the hardness and extent of the rock, 
which it was found necessary to excavate. 

Notwithstanding the General Government had discovered that the 
Constitution of the United States would not allow it to give any counte- 
nance to an enterprise, for internal improvement, in the State of New 
York, and notwithstanding there was no reason to hope for any aid from 
our neighbours, the friends of the Canals were not disheartened. In April, 

eighteen hundred and seventeen, the Act, " respecting the navigable com- 


munications between the great northern and western Lakes, and the 
Atlantic ocean," was passed by large majorities, both in the Senate and 
Assembly. It continued the former commissioners, and contained the im- 
portant fiat, which authorised the commencement of the Canals. 

By this Act, the commissioners were empowered to open the commu- 
nication between the Hudson and Lake Champlain, but as to the west, 
they were only authorised to connect, by Canals and Locks, the Mohawk 
and Seneca Rivers. 

The draft of this Bill was prepared by Mr. Clinton, and the Act was 
passed nearly as he drew it. In it was incorporated a financial system, 
which, at the request of a Committee of the Legislature, he had digested. 
P art of this system was the establishment of the Board of Commissioners 
of the Canal Fund, consisting of the Lieutenant Governor, the Comp- 
troller, th 'Attorney and Surveyor Generals, the Treasurer, and the Secre- 
tary of State. This Board was charged with every thing that concerned 
financial operations in relation to the Canals. The Bill provided ways and 
means to pay the interest on loans which might be made, and the debts 
that would be created. These were donations of lands, which had been 
promised or made by individuals or companies, who would be particularly 
benefited by the Canals ; a small tax on salt manufactured at the salt 
sprino-s, belonging to the State, and in the western country ; a tax on 
steam-boat passengers ; a portion of the duties arising on sales at auction ; 
proceeds from certain lotteries; and a tax of two hundred and fifty 
thousand dollars, to be levied, at some future time, on lands lying within 
twenty-five miles of the Canals. 

The last mentioned tax never has been, and probably never will be, 
collected. Nor is it very certain that in justice and equity it ought to be. 

This partial tax was imposed, upon the supposition that the land holders 
along the lines of the Canal would be particularly benefited by them; but 
in truth, every part of the State derives advantages from these works, 
which may, with great propriety, be said to be incalculable. The inhabi- 
tants of the city of New York, will derive as much profit from the opening 
of these water communications, as any other portion of our citizens ; and 
if the expences of the Canals are to be paid in proportion to the local 
benefits which will be derived from them. New York ought to pay at 
least as large a share as any part of the State. 

Since the Supreme Court of the United States has decided that the 
grant to Livingston and Fulton, of an exclusive riglit to navigate the 
waters of the State, by steam, was invalid, there has been no attempt to 
collect the tax on steam-boat passengers. The lotteries have produced 
nothing; so that the only remaining ways and means are the donations, 
the salt tax, the auction duties, and the Canal tolls. These have afforded 
all the funds it has been requisite for the State to provide; and these great 
works will be paid for, in probably less time than it required to construct 
them, without the imposition of any general tax. and without their cost 
having been felt by the people in the slightest degree. But, on the con- 
trary, the construction of the Canals has been the means of putting in 
circulation about a million of dollars a year, for the last eight years, in parts 
of the country, where every thing was stagnant for want of money and a 

On the fourth of July, eighteen hundred and seventeen, the Canal 
was commenced at Rome — that is, eight years and four months, prior to 
the day when the first boat, which entered the Canal from Lake Erie, Avill 
reach the ocean. 

This important act, the commencement of the Erie Canal, was per- 
formed with some ceremony. Mr. Clinton, the President of the Board, 
who had been chosen Governor at the previous election, in eighteen 
hundred and seventeen, attended with the other Canal commissioners and 
engineers. The anniversary of our independence, since the declaration 
of which only forty-one years had elapsed, was selected as an auspicious 
day to begin this great work. The first earth was removed from the 
Canal path, amidst the acclamations of a large concourse of people, exult- 
ing in the past, enjoying the present, and anticipating the future. 

Governor Clinton opened the Session of eighteen hundred and eighteen, 
with a speech, congratulating the Legislature on the auspicious commence- 
ment and successful progress of the water communications between the 
great western and northern Lakes, and the Atlantic ocean. He expatiated 
on the advantages which agriculture, manufactures, and commerce, would 
derive from the Canals, and on the influence which they would have on 
our political institutions. He assured the Legislature that the resources 
of the State, were adequate to the work, and that extraneous aid was 

But, notwithstanding, the encouragement which this speech was 
calculated to afford, and the eloquent appeal with which it concluded, 
the project (for what was called by its friends " the great Canal," and by 
its opponents the ''big ditch,") met with considerable, and very able oppo- 
sition. The strength of its friends and adversaries was tried in the Assem- 
bly, on an answer, reported by a coinmittee, to the Governor's speech. 
Fears were yet entertained that the anticipations of the execution of so 
great an enterprise, in any reasonable time, and with means which the 
State could provide, were enthusiastic and visionary. Many adopted an 
opinion, which one of our greatest statesmen, whose zeal for internal im- 

pfrn'^raenta coold not be qnestioned, was knawn to have erpressed, that 
we had undertaken this great enterprise a hundred years too soon, and 
that till the lapse of another century, the strength of our population, and 
our resources, would be inadequate to such a work. 

But the part of the Answer which related to this subject, was adopted, 
without alteration, by a majority of nearly two to one. The Answer ex- 
pressed, in a few words, the views which were at that time entertained by 
the friends of the Canals. I therefore beg leave to extract some passages 
from it. I do it the more willingly, because the last paragraph is but an 
echo of the words in which the Governor made the eloquent appeal with 
which that part of his speech, which related to this subject, concluded. 

" The advantages which must result, not only to this State, but to the 
world, from the completion of the contemplated communications between 
the inland seas, on our borders, and the Atlantic ocean, are so manifest, 
that we cannot but express the great satisfaction with Avhich we learn, 
from your Excellency, tliat they have been auspiciously commenced, and 
are in successful progress. This satisfaction is greatly increased by the 
information you have given us, that this stupendous work may be per- 
formed at an expence not exceeding in the aggregate, the estimates of the 
commissioners, and that our resources are fully adequate to them, without 
extraneous aid. We believe that no part of the world affords so many 
natural advantages for the execution o( such an un ertaking. Inexhaust- 
ible reservoirs lying above the level of the Canal in every part of its 
course; a country, not intercepted by ridges or mountains, which com- 
monly separate the heads of water courses, are in themselves advanta;i;es, 
that no work of the same kind has, as we believe, ever before enjoyed. 
The great causes of exp>ense in the execution of similar projects have been 

the necessity of passing near the summits, on which were situated the 


fountains which supplied the water, and the works, on that account ne- 
cessary, to economise the use of that element. There is reason to believe 
that the ingenuity and industry of our countrymen, will enable us to do 
more work of this kind, than has been done elsewhere for the same 
money, notwithstanding the price of labor is, probably, greater than has 
been paid to those who have executed similar enterprises. 

The effects of opening these communications can, as yet, be but in- 
distinctly seen in their extent. They will reach every member of the com- 
munity ; — they must be felt by every citizen of the United States : and, 
indeed, so important an alteration in the natural disposition of the lands 
and waters of the earth cannot but have an influence on the condition of 
mankind. It will afford the means of easy intercourse with an internal 
sea-coast, connected with immeasurable tracts of fruitful soil, not 
inferior in extent to the shores of the Mediterranean. When these works 
are accomplished, a water communication between the Lakes and the 
Mississippi, and forty or fifty thousand miles of navigable streams, may 
be made without difficulty, and at inconsiderable expence. The com- 
merce of an immense space will be led to the Hudson. If this should be 
the result of the great enterprise in which we are engaged, New York will 
have advantages infinitely greater than any city has ever had, and she must 
forever enjoy them without a rival. The commerce of the Mediterranean 
is the support of many great commercial cities, but New York will stand 
alone at the entrance of this extensive channel, and must be a greater 
emporium than ever called herself the mistress of commerce. 

Besides the advantnges which your Excellency has enumerated, and 
which it is so obvious, will be the result of the accomplishment of this stu- 
pendous work, there is certainly a national glory connected with the enter- 
prise, calculated to excite the pride of every patriot. When we consider 

that every portion of the nation will feel the animating spirit and vivifying 
influence of these great works, that they will receive the benedictions of 
posterity, and command the approbation of the civilized world, we are 
required to persevere, so far as a prudent regard to the resources of the 
State will permit, by every consideration which ouglif to influence the 
consciences, and govern the conduct of a free, enlightened, and magnani- 
mous people." 

The commissioners, Mr. Van Rensselaer, Mr. Clinton, Mr. Yoimg, and 
Mr. Holley, made a very minute, elaborate, and encouraging Report. 
Among other matters which were very satisfactory, they stated that they 
had engaged, on the section that they had commenced, Mr. Isaac Briggs, 
an eminent mathematician, who has rendered important services in the 
progress of the Canals. 

The commissioners also stated, that they had begun by dividing the 
middle section of the Canal line, into small sections, and procuring the 
work to be done on these by contract. Perhaps nothing has contributed 
more to the successful accomplishment of the work than that the commis- 
sioners have so generally persevered in this plan. It was gratifying also 
to learn from the commissioners report, that the engineers, and the young 
men they had employed as assistants, had evinced capacity and talents 
which left no room to fear that we should be obliged to seek abroad, men- 
tal or scientific aid. 

The Session of eighteen hundred and nineteen, was opened by a speech 
of Governor CHnton, no less satisfactory than that of the last year. He 
was enabled to reiterate his congratulations on the progress of the work, as 
well on the northern as on the western Canal, and to give assurances that 
the experience which that progress had afforded, left not a doubt of the 

feasibility of the work or of the ability of the State without any taxes, or 
any other means than those which had been already provided, to meet the 
necessary expenditul-e. He therefore warmly recommended that a law 
should be passed, authorising the completion of both Canals, as soon as 
was practicable. 

After a very favorable report from the Canal commissioners, in which 
they represented that the works on the middle sectioi, under the superin- 
tendance of Benjaiiiin Wright, Esquire, as principal engineer, had been 
conducted with great success; and after a report from a Committee of the 
Assembly, reciprocating the Governor's sentiments on the subject, the act 
of eighteen hundred and nineteen " concerning the great western and 
northern Canals," was passed. 

This law authorised the commissioners to complete both the eastern 
and western, as well as the middle section of the Erie Canal, and em- 
powered the commissioners of the Canal Fund to make the necessary 

A law was also passed at this Session for constructing a harbour at 
Buffalo Creek. 

Mr. Hart, who signed the report, as one of the commissioners, had been 
appointed in the room of Mr. EUicott, who had resigned. Afterwards 
Henry Seymour was appointed to fill this place. 

Mr. Canvas White, and Mr. Nathan S. Roberts, who had acted as 
assistant engineers, the commissioners stated, had evinced so much talent 
and usefulness, that they had assigned them more important duties. 

The Report is also interesting on account of its announcing the dis- 
covery, near the Canal line, of what the commissioners call meagre lime. 
It is that material which, when made into mortar, indurates under water, 
and has been so essential to the construction of the hydraulic works of 
the Canals. This important discovery was made by Mr. Canvas White, 
who has obtained a patent for its use. Nature seems not only to have 
laid out the path for the great western Canal, but to have made the most 
bountiful provision near it, of all the materials necessary for its construc- 
tion. The massive stones of which the locks arc composed, have been 
obtained without difficulty wherever they have been requisite. This water 
lime has already become an article of commerce within tlic United States. 
and is said to be so superior to the Roman cement, and the English limes, 
that no doubt it will soon be exported. 

In the Report now adverted to, the commissioners gave a description 
of several labor-saving machines, employed on the Canals ; among others, 
they mentioned a machine for prostrating the forest trees, that grew on 
the Canal lines ; another, with which the stumps of trees, that had been 
cut down, were eradicated : and a third, for cutting up roots. These were 
all the inventions of our own countrymen, and though they may not seem 
of sufficient consequence to be mentioned on this occasion, yet these, and 
other ingenious machines which were contrived for the occasion, were of 
very great importance in the completion of these works. Indeed, to see a 
Ibrest tree, which had withstood the elements till it attained maturity, torn 
up by its roots, and bending itself to the earth, in obedience to the com- 
mand of man, is a spectacle that must awaken feelings of gratitude to that 
Being, who has bestowed on his creatures so much power and wisdom. 

At the opening of the Session of eighteen hundred and twenty, Governor 

Clinton had the gratification of announcing, in his speech to the Legisla- 



ture, " that the middle section of the western Canal, including a lateral 
cut to Salina, and comprising a distance of nearly ninety-six miles, had 
been completed. That on the twenty-third day of the preceding October, 
the commissioners navigated it from Utica to Rome, and found their most 
sanguine expectations realised in the celerity, economy, and excellence of 
its execution. That, on the twenty-fourth day of the previous November, 
the whole Champlain Canal was also in a navigable state. That thus, in 
less than two years and five months, one hundred and twenty miles of 
artificial navigation had been finished." 

The Governor was enabled to say, that these works, in their then un- 
finished state, had given to our internal trade an animation, which 
could not be duly appreciated, without the advantages of personal obser- 

The Report of the Canal commissioners was equally satisfactory. It 
contained very long and minute details of what had been done, as well as 
views and estimates of the work that remained to be executed. 

The Report was accompanied by surveys, made by Mr. Thomas, of 
the harbour, at BuflTalo. Mr. Thomas submitted propositions which he 
had received, for harbours at Black Rock, and at some other points near 
what was supposed would be the termination of the Erie Canal. 

At this Session a law was passed allowing the Canal commissioners a 
salary of two thousand dollars a year, but it contained a clause that this 
provision should only extend to three of the commissioners who should be 
actually engaged in the superintendence of the works. This was intended 
to meet the arrangement which the commissio;iers had previously made as 
to themselves. Mr. Young, Mr. Seymour, and Mi-. HoUey, had been active 


and immediate superintendents of the execution of the Canals for which 
they had received a compensation or salary, while Mr. Clinton and Mr. 
Van Rensselaer's duties were confined to the meetings of the board. 
Neither of these gentlemen have ever taken the least compensation for 
their services. 

Hence arose the designation of acting commissioners, which was ap- 
plied to Mr. Young, Mr. Seymour, and Mr. HoUey, and afterwards to Mr. 
W. E. Bouck, when he was the next year appointed one of tlie Board. 
These gentlemen have devoted themselves to the management and super- 
intendence of the works, with a zeal and ability to which the speed, effi- 
cacy, and economy with which it has been executed, bears the best evi- 
dence. When it is considered that the commissioners and engineers could 
have had no experience in canalling ; that the science they acquired must 
have been in a great measure the result of mental application, while they 
were constantly employed in the active and aiLxious duties of their station, 
they deserve a commendation to which any thing I could say on this occa- 
sion, would be very inadequate. 

From the time the navigation to Lake Champlain, and between Rome 
and Montezuma was opened, all opposition to the completion of the western 
Canal to Lake Erie and the Hudson ceased, or was very feeble. 

Those who had entertained honest doubts as to the practicabilitv of 
the great work, yielded to this evidence of the feasibility of executing the 
whole of the original plan. Experiments on so large a scale gave confi- 
dence in the estimates which had been made before the work was com- 
menced ; these estimates were somewhat exceeded by the actual expendi- 
ture, owing to circumstances before noticed, and to some other adventitious 
causes, which the commissioners, in their Report, satisfactorily explained. 


The advantages, as well as the profit, of these water communications, 
were immediately felt. The Canal from Champlain, and the middle sec- 
tion of the western Canal, were covered Avith boats the moment they were 
opened ; and although no tolls were taken till July, eighteen hundred and 
twenty, the amount received in the course of the season, gave earnest of 
what the Canals would produce when they were finished. No doubt was 
longer entertained but that the resources and credit of the State were 
competent to furnish all the funds that would be required. 

From this time the communications from the executive, and the reports 
of the commissioners, to the Legislature, were details of the uninterrupted 
and fortunate progress of the great work, and congratulations on the 
rapidity with which the period was approaching when the State, and the 
nation, would be in possession of the incalculable advantages which must 
result from the completion of the New York Canals. 

These communications and reports are documents of the most interest- 
ing and useful character. They are important, not only as furnishing a 
detailed and very circumstantial history of these works, in their daily 
progress, but as affording minute information, which must be of the greatest 
use to those who may be engaged in similar enterprises. It would not be 
consistent with the character of this Memoir, to swell it with these de- 
tails; It is not in a production of this nature that practical information will 
be sought. The State has established an additional claim as the munifi- 
cent benefactors of mankind, in authorising, by a law passed in February, 
of the present year, a collection and publication of " all the laws, reports, 
and documents relative to the Canals, requisite for a complete official 
history of those works, with correct maps, delineating the routes of the 
Erie and Champlain Canals, and designating the lands through which they 


In compliance with this law, two splendid octavo volumes, with plates 
and charts, and a large atlas, have just been published. They have been 
completed under the superintendence of a committee of the Legislature: 
but justice would not be done were it not acknowledged that the State 
owes, to the indefatigable industry and ability of John Van Ness Yates, 
Esquire, the Secretary of State, this splendid history of works which will 
be for ever connected with her glory. 

While these volumes contain much that mere men of letters m ill not 
read, he who seeks for minute information as to the origin and progress 
of the New York Canals, would have been satisfied with no abbreviation 
of the matter they contain ; and the practical engineer, who desires in- 
struction, will find nothing which he will think ought to have been omitted. 
The routes that have been proposed and abandoned ; the plans which 
have been suggested, or tried and relinquished ; the experiments which 
have been made, and proved unsuccessful, will all have their use, and 
•' The Official History" of these works would have been incomplete had 
any of these things been unnoticed. 

By the first of October, eighteen hundred and twenty-three, the eastern 
section of the Canal was completed. In the mean time the western sec- 
tion had progressed from Montezuma towards Erie, so that when the lock 
which forms the communication between the Canals, and the artificial 
basin in the Hudson River, at Albany, was opened on the eighth of October, 
eighteen hundred and twenty-three, there was a continuous Canal naviga- 
tion from the Genesee River, and from White Hall, at the head of Lake- 
Champlain, to Albany. 

Such an auspicious event as the passage of the first boats from the west, 

and the north into the tide waters, was celebrated with some ceremony. 



Large committees from New York, and from other places on the Canal 
route, attended at Albany. The New York committee was headed by Mr. 
William Bayard. He had presided at the Meeting at which the New 
York Memorial, before mentioned, originated. Mr. James was the Chair- 
man of the Albany committee of citizens. These gentlemen had on all 
occasions given the full weight of their long established and respectable 
characters in favor of the execution of the Canals. When the extent of 
the proposed artificial water-ways, the hills, and vallies, and rivers, over 
which they were to pass, were contemplated, and the resources of the 
State were considered, many thought the plan perfectly visionary. By 
some, the sincerity of its advocates was doubted : they were suspected 
of sinister designs, or they were regarded as infatuated enthusiasts; but 
the countenance of many such men as Mr. Van Rensselaer, Mr. Bayard, 
and Mr. James, whose age and experience, and rank in society, com- 
manded respect, tended to induce a belief that the project was founded 
on mature reflection and sober calculation, and to give confidence that, 
notwithstanding its magnitude and difficulties, it might be accomplished. 

The pencil could not do justice to the scene presented on the fine 
autumnal morning when the Albany lock was first opened. Numerous 
steam boats and river vessels, splendidly dressed, decorated the beautiful 
amphitheatre formed by the hills which border the valley of the Hudson, 
at this place ; the river winding its bright stream far from the north, and 
losing itself in the distance to the south ; — the islands it embraced ; — the 
woods, variegated by the approach of winter, a beauty peculiar to our cli- 
mate ; — the wreathed arches, and other embellishments, which had been 
erected for the occasion, were all objects of admiration. A fine of Canal 
boats, with colours flying, bands of music, and crowded with people, were 
seen coming from the north, and seemed to glide over the level grounds, 


which hid the waters of the Canal for some distance, as if they were 
moved by enchantment. 

The first boat which entered the lock was the De Witt Clinton, having 
On board Governor Yates, the Mayor and Corporation of Albany, the Canal 
commissioners and engineers, the committees, and other citizens. Seve- 
ral other boats succeeded. One, (not the least interesting object in the 
scene,) was filled with ladies. The cap-stone of the lock was laid with 
masonic ceremonies, by the fraternity who appeared in great numbers and 
in grand costume. 

The waters of the west, and of the ocean, were then mingled by Doc- 
tor Mitchell, who pronounced an epithalamium upon the union of the 
River and the Lakes, after which the lock gates were opened, and the De 
Witt Chnton majestically sunk upon the bosom of the Hudson. 

She was then towed by a long line of barges, past the steam boats and 
other vessels to a wharf at the upper end of the city, where those gentle- 
men, who were embarked on board the Canal boats, landed and joined a 
military and civic procession, which was conducted by a large stage, fan- 
cifully decorated, erected for the occasion in front of the Capitol. Here 
the Canal commissioners received a congratulatory address from Charles 
E. Dudley, Esquire. Mayor of Albany, which was answered by Mr. Clin- 
ton, as President of the Board of Commissioners The Albany committee 
was addressed by Mr. Bayard, which was returned by Mr. James, and the 
day concluded with a banquet, at which it may be said, with as much 
propriety as it could be said in relation to any other festive board, that 
there was " the feast of reason and the flow of soul." 


The completion of the eastern section was a matter of great gratifica- 
tion to the friends of the Canals, indeed it may be said to every citizen, 
for, at the time we are speaking of, the Canals had ceased to have any op- 
ponents ; but the difficulties which presented themselves on this section, 
appeared more formidable than any that were to be met with elsewhere on 
the route. The cataract of the Cohoes was to be surmounted ; a path for 
the Canal was to be found along the abrupt rocky shores, rising generally 
to a great elevation, and in many places divided only by the narrow bed 
of the Mohawk; the upper falls of that river were to be overcome. To 
accomplish this, and preserve a due level, it was necessary to carry the 
Canal upon a ledge twenty and thirty feet above the base of perpendicular 
rocks. The ingenuity of our countrymen found, by what they called sand 
blasts, means of blowing off such masses of rock, that a road was made for 
the Canals with much less labor than had been anticipated. In eighty 
days a work was accomplished, which before it was commenced, it was 
calculated would require several years. The Canal between Schenec- 
tady and Albany, twice crosses the Mohawk River in aqueducts of, more 
than eighteen hundred feet in extent. ... ,, . ,-,f ,^^ cfpi-f i- >) 'Jn-R^-f 

In speaking of this section, the Canal commissioners, in their report of 
eighteen hundred and twenty-four say, "none but those who had examined; 
the line previous to the commencement of the work, — who had seen the 
rude and undulating surface which is traversed, — the rocks which were, 
to be blasted, — the irregular ledges, filled with chasms and fissures, which, 
were to form the basis of a water-tight Canal, — the spungy swamps and 
gravel beds, and quick sands which were to be made impervious to water, 
— and, in short, the huge masses of rough materials which, with uncommon 
labor, were to be reduced to symmetry and form, can duly appreciate the 
efforts which it has required to surmount these serious obstacles." 

• The Canal commissioners do not hesitate to admit, that had this section 
been commenced originally, while their information as to constructing 
Canals was merely theoretical, probably the attempt to complete it would 
either have been entirely abortive, or so imperfectly executed, as to have 
defeated, or perhaps postponed for a century, the accomplishment of the 
great work of internal improvements. 

In the course of the season of eighteen hundred and twenty-three, the 
Gleaner, and afterwards several other Canal boats, from Vermont, arrived 
in the city of New York, bearing to our market the produce of the forests, 
the fields, and the mines, of the shores of Lake Champlain. 

In November, of the same year, the Sally and Mary, a boat of sixty or 
seventy tons, from Hector, in Tompkins county, at the head of the Seneca 
Lake, seventy miles south of the Erie Canal, and three hundred and fifty 
miles from New York, had passed into the Canal, by the locks at Waterloo 
and the Seneca River. She arrived at New York, freighted with the rich 
productions of the west. So happy an illustration of the advantages of the 
Canals was not sufTered to pass unnoticed by our citizens. They gave 
Messrs. Osborn and Sealy, two farmers of Tompkins county, who were 
her owners and navigators, a public entertaiimient. 

This vessel was not only received as the precursor of a commerce. 

which will be unlimited in its extent and importance, but as an interesting 

evidence of the ingenuity and enterprise of our countrymen. Her timbers 

grew near where she was built ; her proprietors were her architects ; her 

cargo was the produce of the fields from whence she sprung, and she 

was navigated by those who cultivated them ; her sails and rigging even., 

were emphatically domestic manufactures, for they were grown, and made. 

at the homes of her owners. _ 

16 '** 


When we look at a map, and see marked out, the many Lakes and 
sheets of navigable water which occupy the centre of our State, and reflect 
that every place on their shores is, for all purposes of commerce, con- 
verted by the Canals into a sea-port, and that the trade of all of then* 
must centre in this metropoUs, we may have some idea of the advantages 
which the city and the country will derive from the opening of these water 

The completion of the western section, and of course of the whole 
Erie Canal, was announced to us by the sound of cannon, on the twenty- 
sixth of last month, and to-morrow we shall witness the arrival of a Canal 
boat, from Buffalo, after an internal navigation of five hundred and thir- 
teen miles : she will have passed three hundred and sixty-three miles on 
one continued uninterrupted artificial Canal, forty feet wide on the surface, 
twenty-eight at the bottom, with four feet depth of water : she will have 
passed through eighty-three locks, built of massive stone, the chambers of 
" which are ninety by fifteen feet, capable of containing boats of more than 
a hundred tons burthen ; and she will, when she arrives at Albany, have 
descended five hundred and fifty -five feet ; but her ascent and descent in 
the course of her voyage, w ill have been six hundred and sixty-two feet. 

The great embankment across the Irondiquot, over which the western 
section of the Canal passes, is one of the greatest works on the Canals. 
This aerial water-course extends more than a quarter of a mile, on a mound 
of earth, seventy feet in height, from a stream, flowing through a culvert, at its 
base. The passenger looks down from the narrow eminence, on the tops 
of aged forest trees, rooted in the bottom of the valley. There are works 
upon the Canals, which are, undoubtedly, of a more artificial character, 
and may appear to some more magnificent, but when the length, and 
height, and magnitude of this embankment is considered, and when, above 

the tops of the trees, boats are seen passing on its summit, which is but 
little wider than is necessary for the Canal and towing path, it must excite 
great admiration. 

The aqueduct over the Genesee River, at Rochester, is another mag- 
nificent object on this section, which deserves notice. It is a structure of 
ten arches of hewn stone, extending two hundred and two feet. 

The deep cutting towards the western extremity of this section has cost 
more money, and required more labor, than any other work on the Canals. 
To pass the mountain ridge, there has been a necessity for excavating 
seven miles, to an average depth of twenty-five feet, three miles of which 
is through hard rock. The combined locks, at the brow of the mountain, 
the commissioners describe as a work of the first magnitude on the line, 
and as one of the greatest of the kind in the world. 

Upon the middle section there is an uninterrupted level of sixty-nine 
miles and a half, from Salina to Frankfort; and on the western section, 
there is another level, from Lockport to Rochester, uninterrupted by any 
lock, of sixty-three miles. The extraordinary length of these levels, evince 
the correctness of Mr. CoUes' idea, which lias been before mentioned, 
that " the Allegany mountains died away as they approached the Mohawk." 

There are very many objects on this western section, as well as on other 
parts of the Canals, which deserve attention, but to notice them, would re- 
quire details which this occasion will not admit. Those who wish information 
as to these and other particulars, must roferto thsvolumes before mentioned, 
published by authority of the State; or to a volume, published in eighteen 
hundred and twenty, undiT the direction of the New York Corresponding 
Association for the Promotion of Internal Improvements. It contains a col- 

lection of public documents relating to the Canals, up to the time of its 
publication ; but it is now more valuable for an introduction, which was 
written by the late Mr. Charles G. Haines, one of the Association, in whose 
death the cause of internal improvements lost a very warm, able, and ac- 
tive advocate. In the prime of life, he fell a sacrifice to the ardour and 
unremitting industry, with which he devoted himself to the acquirement of 
knowledge, the practice of his profession, and to the promotion of ahnost 
every plan that was on foot for the public good. His frame was too slender, 
and his constitution too weak to bear the excitement of his ardent mind. 
He died just as he had commenced a career, which, had he lived to pur- 
sue it, must have led to eminence ; but, though his friends regret that 
he did not live to reap the fruits of his talents and industry, they more 
deeply regret that, by his death, they have been deprived of one who had 
gained all that esteem and respect which genius, acquirements, zeal, in- 
dustry, honor, and benevolence deserve. 

At Albany the Canal terminates in a basin, formed from the Hudson, 
by extending a pier, or mole, into the river, and running it parallel to the 
shore, nearly three quarters of a mile. The communication with the 
River, is at the southern extremity of the mole, by a sloop lock which ad- 
mits the passage of river vessels, as well as of Canal boats, in and out of 
the basin. Stores are building on the pier, which is seventy-six feet in 
width, on the top. From one end of these stores, Canal boats in the basin 
may be laden or unladen ; and, at the other end, sloops in the river may 
be loaded or discharged. 

This spacious harbour, which will have a superficies of about thirty- 
two acres, has been made by a private Company, incorporated for the 
purpose, by a law of the State. They are permitted to have the benefit of 
certain tolls, but it is presumed the State has reserved the right to con- 

troul the corporation, so far as to oblige it to exercise its powers entirely 
in subservience to the interests of the public. 

The Erie Canal, at its western extremity, at present discharges into 
an artificial basin, made from the Niagara River, at Black Rock, by con- 
necting the main shore with Squaw Island. In the dam from Squaw Island 
to the main, there is a sloop lock, which communicates with the river be- 
low. If the bridge, which has been thrown over the Niagara River, from 
the main to Goat Island, at the very brink of the Great Falls, by Judge 
Porter, did not shew us what might be done by great boldness, ingenuity, 
and enterprise, and convince us that works may be constructed in the 
river, of sufficient strength to resist its current, where it is most impetuous, 
we might doubt whether it would be possible to make the mole or piers 
of the Black Rock harbour, stable; if, contrary to predictions, it should 
stand, — if still water should be produced within the harbour, — and if it 
should not be injured or obstructed by ice or sands, it cannot be questioned 
but that it will be of great importance. It will be the more valuable, because 
without it, there is no harbour in that quarter, except at Buffalo ; to which, 
if the harbour at Black Rock should not be found to answer, the Canal 
will be continued along the margin of the Niagara River, to join, what is 
considered, a part of the Erie Canal, extending from the town of BufTalo 
to the Lake. 

The rival interests of Buffalo and Black Rock, have created much 
excitement as to the termination of the Canal to the west. There has 
been a difference of opinion among the Canal commissioners, and among 
the engineers, as to the plan which ought to be adopted. The Legisla- 
ture seems to have pursued a discreet and impartial course, by reserving 
the grounds for, and the right to make, the Canal along the margin of the 



Niagara River, if, after the works at Black Rock are completed and tested. 
the public good requires the Canal to be uninterruptedly continued to 
Buffalo harbour. 

To mention all who have been concerned in the immediate execution 
of these great Morks, as they deserve, would require a list, which, if an 
attempt were now made to present it, there is reason to fear would not be 
perfect. It would also require infonnation which I do not possess, and 
which no time is allowed to acquire. All the commissioners have been 
mentioned ; those who have been designated as the acting commissioners, 
and who in some measure perfonned the duties of engineers, as well as of 
advisers and superintendents, are Mr. Holley, Mr. Young, Mr. Seymour, 
and Mr. Bouck. The principle engineers are Mr. Wright, Mr. Geddes, 
Mr. White, and Mr. Thomas. In one of their reports the commissioners 
say "in looking back to the numerous difficulties and responsibilities, 
some of them of an aspect the most disheartening, which surrounded the 
Canals, especially on their commencement, we feel compelled, by common 
justice, to commend the aid which has, at all times, been afforded by our 
engineers. In the selection of all the persons who are now employed by 
us under this character, we have been eminently fortunate. But to the 
Honorable Benjamin Wright and James Geddes, the State is mostly in- 
debted. Possessing much local information, competent science, long 
experience in many kinds of business, bearing some analogy to Canal 
operations, and well established characters for industry and fidelity, these 
gentlemen have rendered the most essential services in all the duties of 
their department. They were first appointed engineers. They have 
unceasingly, and with improving -fitness, devoted their best faculties to the 
o-reat cause in which tliey were engaged ; and they have hitherto been 
found equal to the high trusts confided to them." 


But no eulogy could do so much justice to the commissioners and en- 
gineers as an appeal to their works. It has been said, and it is believed 
truly, that they have completed, in the shortest time, and at the least 
expence, the longest uninterrupted Canal in the world. 

The official reports of the Canal commissioners, of the commissioners 
of the Canal fund and the engineers, are calculated to do them infinite 
credit: but it is impossible to take any particular view of the merits of 
these documents on this occasion : nor is it now so necessary, as they are 
before the public in the volumes before mentioned, published by authority 
of the State. 

From the time that the great Canal project was brought before the 
Legislature, by Judge Piatt, in eighteen hundred and ten, Mr. Clinton has 
bestowed his time and talents to promote the commencement, progress, 
and completion of these great works, with an entire devotedness. The 
constancy with which he met all opposition ; — the extent of the information 
he communicated, — his encouragement as to the resources and capacity 
of the State, althougli she was left alone to perform so great a work; the 
unrivalled eloquence with which, in his speeches to the Legislature, as well 
as in those Canal reports which he drew, he appealed to the honor, the 
pride, and the patriotism of his native State, it must be admitted con- 
tributed greatly to the accomplishment of the great works, in celebrating 
the completion of which all hearts now join. 

Many of those who thought the Canals impracticable, till a large por- 
tion of them were finished, and who supposed that their failure would over- 
whelm with disgrace all who were connected with their execution, did not 
hesitate to charge Mr. Clinton with being answerable for engaging the 
State in so great and so expensive an undertaking. Surely they who 


would have censured him so severely if the Canals had failed, will not, in 
justice, refuse to give him due credit, now that they have succeeded. 

His exertions were not confined to his official duties, as President of 
the Board of Canal commissioners, and as Governor ; his able pen was 
constantly employed in promoting an enterprise which, as he said, was 
identified not only with the prosperity, happiness, and honor, of his own 
State, but with that of his country. He had so large a share in the accom- 
plishment of these great works, that his name will always be intimately 
connected with them, and will not be forgotten while they endure. 

The history of the Canals is one of the proudest monuments that the 
present age will transmit to posterity : but now, when the agitations of the 
times are past, when no passion is mixed with our feelings, there is one 
page which many will wish blotted out. It is that which records the 
Legislative vote by which Mr. Clinton, on the last day of the Session, of 
the year eighteen hundred and twenty-four, when the Canals were on the 
point of being finished, was removed as a Canal commissioner. 

But these great Canals will not be regarded as the work of individuals. 
They will be attributed to the State of New York; every citizen deserves 
a share of the credit connected with them. In the language of the com- 
missioners it will be said " their labors could not have been perfected with- 
out the support of a wise foresight, and just liberality, in several successive 
Legislatures. To us, it appears, that these Legislatures have aflforded a 
spectacle, most animating, encouraging, and delightful, in reference to 
the sagacity of the people to understand, and their wisdom to provide 
for their most substantial interests. They exhibit the most impressive 
example which the United States have yet produced, since the adoption of 
the Federal Constitution, of the beneficent effects of a free Government, 
upon the character of a community. They are intimately connected with 

the best hopes of the Repubhc. Rising above all fugitive and partial 
interests, and with a full detail of the costs of these works before them, 
the immediate representatives of the people have so clearly discerned the 
benefits which they would introduce, as to apply to them from year to 
year a greater portion of their funds than was sutiicient to defray the 
expences of the State Government.'' 

The well-meaning opposition which the Canals for a certain time en- 
countered, as well in as out of the Legislature, was not without its good 
effects. It induced a circumspection, economy, and system of rigid ac- 
countability, which might not have been observed, if all had been as una- 
nimously and zealously in favor of Canals, as they are at the present moment. 

It has been said, in this Memoir, that the Erie Canal is the longest in 
the world. It is believed that it is so ; but it must be recollected that we 
speak of it as one continuous uninterrupted artificial Canal, for upwards 
of three hundred and sixty miles. 

As has been mentioned, England has more than a hundred Canals : 
but she has no one, which, independent of branches, extends a hundred 

The largest Canal in France is the Canal of Languedoc, which is one 
hundred and fifteen miles. 

The inland navigation of Russia is so extensive, that it is said to be 
possible to convey goods by water near four thousand five hundred miles, 
but this is by using her Lakes, and natural water-courses, which are con- 
nected by Canals, no one of which is more than half as long as the Erie 




Besides innumerable Canals spread over the whole surface of China- 
she has an inland navigation, extending from Canton to Pekin, a distance 
of eight hundred and twenty-five miles, but this navigation is not formed 
by an uninterrupted Canal. On the contrary, the artificial works are 
gonnected by Lakes and natural water-courses. But it is extraordinary 
that the Chinese do not use locks, at least not generally. They pass 
from one level to another by means of sluices. This renders the descent 
dangerous, and the ascent so difficult and laborious, that it requires 
the united exertions of many men to drag a vessel from a lower to a 
higher level. 

But if we consider the extent of the internal navigation which is 
opened by the formation of the New York Canals, we shall find it greatly 
beyond that which any other country in the world affords. Within our 
own State we have a navigation into the minor Lakes, and upon several 
navigable streams, that can not be less than a thousand miles. 

From the embouchure of the Canal at Lake Erie, to the head of Lake 
Superior, is more than one thousand miles, l.ut with slight interruption the 
water communications extend to the Arctic Sea. 

Had Captain Franklin, and his party, who are now exploring those 
i-egions for a North-west passage, commenced his expedition, so as to have 
arrived here a few months later than he did, he would have found that he 
could have been transported from London, five thousand miles towards 
his destination without being obliged to set his foot on land. 

By the Erie Canal, and the Oswego River, there is a communica- 
tion with the Lower Saint Lawrence, and thus an inland navigation 


is opened through the whole extent of that river, which, added to the 
Lakes, gives a line of navigable waters extending not less than two thou- 
sand miles. 

The Lake coast, including Lake Michigan and Green Bay, extends 
nearly four thousand miles, besides there are many navigable rivers fall- 
ing into the Lakes and the Saint Lawrence, with which a perfect water 
communication from the City of New York, is formed by opening the 
Erie and Champlain Canals. 

It is curious to observe, that by these artificial water-Avays, the continent 
of America will be divided into great islands. 

One, bounded by the Champlain Canal, the Sorel, the Saint Lawrence, 
the Atlantic, and the Hudson. Another, by the Champlain Canal, Lake 
Champlain, the Sorel, the Saint Lawrence, Ontario, the Niagara, Lake 
Erie, and the western Canal. And a third, is bounded by the Hudson, 
the Erie Canal, the Lakes, the water communication which exists between 
them at certain seasons, and the waters of the Mississippi, the Mississippi, 
the Gulf of Mexico, and the Atlantic. A Canal, of not more than one 
mile and three-quarters, between the Ouisconsin, which falls into the 
Mississippi, and the Fox River, which empties into Lake Michigan, streams 
that are now constantly navigated, will form another immense island, that 
will have Lake Superior for its northern, and the Mississippi for its western 

Indeed, every Canal that may be opened, and make a communication 
between the waters of the Lakes and of the Mississippi, will form a new 
subdivision of the continent into islands, with the immeasurable shores of 


which the city of New York may have commercial intercourse, with more 
certainty, facility, and advantage, than if they were washed by the sea. 

But, supposing no other communication to be completed than that with 
the Mississippi, which will be formed by the Canal that Ohio is now 
executing, we shall then have a perfect line of internal navigation, from 
the city of New York, by the Hudson, the Erie Canal, Lake Erie, the Ohio 
Canal, the Ohio, Mississippi, Missouri, and JefTerson Rivers, to the foot of 
the Rocky Mountains, a distance of nearly five thousand miles ; and, with 
less interruption than there is in the great China Canals. By Lewis River 
and the Oregon, we shall have an internal navigation from the Atlantic to 
the Pacific. 

From Astoria at the mouth of the Oregon, to China, would, in a steam- 
boat, on the Pacific ocean, be a passage of some fifteen or twenty days. 
And thus, will be formed a northwest passage to India, for which Hudson 
was searching w hen he discovered the river which bears his name. 

It is possible that the route above indicated may be that which will 
hereafter be pursued by travellers between the western shores of the 
European, and the Eastern shores of the Asiatic continents. New York, 
Albany, Utica, Buffalo, Cleveland, and St.Louis, may become post towns on 
the common high road to India. This route would hardly be half as long as 
that which is now pursued by sea ; and though a journey to China, through 
our Canals, Lakes, and Rivers, and over the North Pacific, would be longer 
than the route over the European and Asiatic continents, yet the former 
could be accomplished with much the greater ease. A person embarking 
on the Thames, by pursuing always a westerly course, with some devia- 
tions to follow the sinuosities of the rivers and Canals, might arrive at 
China, without setting his foot on land, except to cross the Rocky Moun- 

tains, over which Ave shall, in time, if a Canal be impracticable, have a 
turnpike road. 

The principal navigable rivers, west of the Allegany Mountains, which 
are tributary to the Ohio, Mississippi, and Missouri, with which, (supposing 
the Ohio Canal to be opened,) we shall have an internal water communica- 
tion, extend more than six thousand miles ; and thus, if we take the north- 
ern rivers, the shores of the Lakes, the Ohio, the Mississippi, the Missouri, 
and the other principal tributary rivers above mentioned, we shall have 
an internal navigation, connected with the city of New York, by the 
Canals of this State, of more than fifteen thousand miles. If we take into 
the account the innumerable minor navigable streams, which are branches 
of the great water-courses above enumerated, and the rivers discharg- 
ing themselves into the Gulph of Mexico, independently of the Mis- 
sissippi, such as the Apalachicola, the Alabama, the Tombeckbee, Pearl 
River, and others, the estimate made by the Assembly, in their 
answer to the Governor's speech, in eighteen hundred and eighteen, that 
the internal navigation which would be connected with the Hudson, by 
the Canals, would amount to forty or fifty thousand miles, will not ap- 
pear exaggerated. 

The Canals of New York and Ohio will make a change in the course 
of waters on the American continent, which it could hardly have been 
believed the power of man could have effected. From the summit 
level of the Champlain Canal, waters, which used to find their way to the 
Atlantic through the Hudson, will be turned back, and will now mix with 
the sea in the Straits of Belisle. Streams, on the summit level of the Ohio 
Canal, which now swell the cataract of Niagara, will be conducted to the 
Gulph of Mexico, by the channels of the great river. 



When we consider that the immense regions surrounding the 
Lakes, and bounded by the great rivers, water-courses, and Canals, 
to which we have adverted, are all within the temperate zone, — that they 
are all capable of sustaining man ; — that they are populating with astonish- 
ing rapidity, — that the greatest part of the soil is fruitful, and much of it as 
rich and productive as any on earth, we must be impressed with ideas 
of the importance of the great works we have accomplished. 

Though New York cannot expect to attract more than a part of the- 
conmaerce of these vast countries, yet till other communications are 
opened between the west and the east, a large portion of it will be drawn 
to her great market. New channels may divert some of the trade of the 
west from New York, but her position on the confines of the sea, at a 
point nearer to the Lakes than any other on the whole American coast ; — 
her beautiful, spacious, and secure harbour, — her constantly uninterrupted 
navigation, to the ocean, — and her healthful climate, are advantages which 
are combined at no other spot in the United States. New York must 
largely share in the fur trade of the north, for which so much human blood 
has been shed. The water communications between Hudson's Bay and 
the Mississippi, and Lake Superior, are almost perfect. The inhabitants 
of the shores of all the great Lakes will find their natural market at the 
mouth of the Hudson : the upper Mississippi, the Ohio, and all their tri- 
butary streams, will send produce, and receive returns from this mercan- 
tile emporium. When the boundless regions of the Missouri are popu- 
lated, and the fruits of their cultivation are deposited at Saint Louis, 
there are many circumstances which will induce a transportation of a 
part of them, at least, to this metropolis, through the Ohio and New York 


Although all these anticipations should not be realised, yet \se may be 
sure that, before the close of the present century, New York, which, at the 
conclusion of the revolutionary war, contained less than twenty-five 
thousand inhabitants, and now has one hundred and seventy thousand, 
will be one of the greatest commercial cities in the world. 

I am aware that these estimates of the effects of our Canals will appear 
to be exaggerated or enthusiastic. Possibly they may be so. The occa- 
sion does not require accurate measurements and precise calculations ol" 
distances. If there be error in any of those which have been presented, 
they may be corrected by reference to a map of the United States, from a 
view of which they are made. As to the future advantages of the water 
communications, the opening of which we are about to celebrate, we may 
be permitted to mix our hopes and wishes and the feelings of the moment 
with our speculations. Were this a work that would ever be resorted to 
for practical information, it would be necessary to employ time, not 
now allowed, for mature reflection, and it would be proper to subdue 
the excitement which success in so great an enterprise must, for a time, 
create in any breast not preternaturally cold. 

It has been said that we Americans, not content with the considera- 
tion to which our actual condition entitles us, indulge a boastful disposi- 
tion in anticipations of future greatness. If this be so, it is at least as 
pardonable as the weakness of those who pride themselves on the great- 
ness of their ancestors. Our former predictions, however extravagant 
they may have appeared, have been more than realised. Around us every 
object is new, youthful, and vigorous : it is natural that we should indulge 
and express hopes of continued prosperity, and of a rich and powerful 
maturity. Did we live amidst ruins, which mark former greatness ; — were 
we always presented with scenes indicating present decay, and forboding 

constant deterioration, we might be as little inclined as others, to look for- 
ward. But we delight in the promised sunshine of the future, and leave 
those who are conscious that they have passed their grand climacteric, to 
console themselves with the splendor of the past. 

After the views we have taken of the advantages which will result 
from the Canals, it seems almost unnecessary to descend to estimates of 
their costs, and of what will be their money produce to the treasury of the 
State. But something on this topic will be expected. 

The Canals not having been completed when the commissioners made 
their last report, there are not now documents before the public which 
will shew precisely what has been the cost of these works. There are, 
however, data which enable us to ascertain the amount very nearly. 

In the annual report of the commissioners of the Canal Fund, made in 
eighteen hundred and twenty-five, they state that all the monies paid for 
the Canals, up to the first of January, of that year, after deducting the 
tolls received, amounted to eight millions eight hundred and twenty-nine 
thousand and fifty-dollars. We find that the tolls received to the last men- 
tioned date amounted to four hundred and ninety-one thousand four hun- 
dred and fifteen dollars ; and, according to the last report of the Canal 
commissioners, it then required to complete the Canals, and to satisfy all 
claims for damages, eight hundred thousand dollars. These sums added 
together amount to ten miUions one hundred and twenty thousand, four hun- 
dred and sixty-five dollars, which may be taken as the whole amount 
which has been disbursed on account of the Canals. 

The Erie Canal is three hundred and sixty three miles in length, and, 
on the Champlain route there are eighteen miles of Canal. The extent, 


therefore, of canalling is three hundred and eighty-one miles, which gives 
an average of twentj-six thousand two hundred and forty-one dollars a 

But there are, connected with the Champlain Canal, forty-six miles of 
improved navigation in the Hudson, and in Wood Creek. The expence 
of these improvements has been very great : so that, in estimating tlie cost 
of the Canals per mile, these forty-six miles ought to be taken into the 
calculation. This makes the whole length four hundred and twenty-seven 
miles, and the cost, per mile, twenty-three thousand four hundred and 
twenty dollars. 

But, it must be recollected, that when the question is, how much the 
Canals have actually cost the State, they must have credit for the amount 
of the tolls they have yielded. 

The last mentioned report of the Canal commissioners states, that from 
the opening of the navigation in the spring of eighteen hundred and 
twenty-four, till it was closed by the w inter, late in December, of the same 
year, although only two hundred and eighty miles of the Erie Canal were 
navigable, and " although the regions west of Buffalo, had hardly begun to 
pay their contribution to the western Canal," amounted to three hundred 
and fifty thousand, seven hundred and sixty-one dollars. The commis- 
sioners calculate that the tolls, for the present year, will amount to five 
hundred thousand dollars ; and that for the nine years succeeding January 
eighteen hundred and twenty-six, they will increase at an average of 
seventy-five thousand dollars a year. That the tolls, with the revenue 
pledged by the Constitution of the State, adopted in eighteen hundred and 
twenty-two, to the Canal Fund, till the Canal debt be extinguished, %vill in 

ten years, besides meeting all necessary expences for repairs and superin- 


tendence pay off the whole of the Canal debt which, it is estimated, will on 
the first of January next, when the Canals will be entirely completed, amount 
to seven millions, six hundred and ninety-three thousand, seven hundred 
dollars; and will, at the expiration of the period last mentioned, leave the 
State in the receipt of a clear, unincumbered revenue, from the Canal Fund, 
of more than a million and a half of dollars. 

But when the Canal debt is paid, the salt tax, and the State duties on 
sales at auction may be, and the former probably will be, repealed. The 
steam-boat tax, it is presumed, cannot, or will not, be collected. If, then, 
we deduct, after January, eighteen hundred and thirty-six, from the pro- 
ceeds of the Canal Fund, four hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars, 
for these objects (they now amount only to three hundred and fifty thou- 
sand dollars) and make a further deduction of one hundred thousand 
dollars for repairs, collection, and superintendence ; the State will then 
have a nett revenue, arising from the Canals, free of all charges, of one 
million of dollars, which is more than equal to four times the ordinary 
annual expences of her government. 

So that if the expectations of the Canal commissioners, as to the tolls 
be realised, and the financial scheme they have proposed, or any other as 
effectual be adopted, and firmly and faithfully pursued, this State will, after 
the expiration of ten years, exhibit to the world the novel spectacle of a 
community of between two and three miUions of people, (for our popula- 
tion will be at least as extensive in ten years), not only maintaining their 
Government, without taxes, but deriving a large surplus revenue from 
property of the State. 

We shall, it is true, be still liable to pay the imposts which the General 
Government may think proper to impose, on such foreign goods as we may 


choose to consume; but the independent farmer, who raises on his own 
lands, and manufactures all that he eats, drinks, wears, and uses, may live, 
without paying to the State or to the national Government, any kind of tax, 
either direct or indirect. 

It is worthy of remark, that in the eight years, during which the State 
of New York has been expending between nine and ten millions in the 
construction of her Canals, there have been collected, for duties of impost 
and tonnage, at the Custom-house, in the city of New York, and paid 
into the treasury of the United States, more than sixty-four millions of 
dollars; besides other monies collected at the Custom-houses of the 
United States in other parts of the State, the amount of which there is now 
no opportunity to ascertain. 

Within the period just mentioned, more than nine millions of dollars 
have been raised in the State, and applied to the support of common 
schools ; besides, very large sums have been bestowed on colleges, and 
for the promotion of science and literature. 

The commissioners say, that their calculations, as to the receipt of tolls 
for the time to come, have been estimated so much within the probable 
proceeds, that they presume no contingency can take place, whicli will re- 
duce the aggreg ite amouiit of the Canal Fund, at the end of ten years, 
below the sum specified. There is the more confidence due to their esti- 
mates, because, it is certainly true, as they remark, that hitherto their an- 
ticipations, in reference to the receipt of tolls, have uniformly fallen short 
of the reality. They add, that they have no doubt but that the same fate 
awaits the calculations which are presented in the report to which we 
now refer, and they express a confidence that the Canal tolls are destined 
to a much more rapid increase than the commissioners have made the 


basis of their calculations as to the extinguishment of the debt. They 
suppose, that there is now within the sphere of the operation of the Erie 
Canal alone, a population of one million of inhabitants ; and that, that 
population will continue to increase at a ratio, which will double it in ten 
years ; that the tolls will be annually augmented in proportion to the increase 
of the population. Then, in the year eighteen hundred and forty-six, the 
Erie Canal will, of itself, produce a revenue of two millions of dollars ; 
and, in the year eighteen hundred and fifty-six, four millions of dollars. 

The anticipations of the Canal commissioners, as to the time in which 
the Canal debt may be paid off, are supported by the Report of the com- 
missioners of the Canal Fund, and by a Report of a joint committee of 
the Senate and Assembly on Canals, to which the Reports of both these 
Boards were referred. 

The Committee, in their Report say, " that the productiveness of the 
Canals is established, and the income derivable from them far beyond 
the anticipations of the most sanguine. The Canals will pay for them- 
selves, as the committee beheve, in a shorter period of time, than estimated 
by the commissioners of the Canal Fund, in their highly interesting and 
valuable Report, made to the Legislature, at the present Session." 

What will be the augmentation of revenue from the Erie Canal, now 
that it is entirely opened, and becomes the high road for the commerce of 
the shores of the Lakes, and of the rivers of the north and west, it is impos- 
sible to predict. 

Hitherto, persons using the western Canal have been almost entirely 
inhabitants of our own State, living near it. But, no doubt, as, the com- 
missioners say, the time will arrive, within fifty years, when the number 

of the people of this Stat«, who will use the Canal, will form but an in- 
considerable fraction of the whole number whose property will float upon 
it ; when nine-tenths of the produce and merchandize transported upon 
the western Canal, will pay toll for the whole length of the line. 

It seems certain that, in a short time, the receipts of toll will be limited 
by nothing but the capacity of the Canals to admit the passage of boats. 
Ten thousand boats passed at the junction locks the last season, which is 
at the rate of about forty a day, for two hundred and fifty days, during 
which time we may calculate that the Canal, in ordinary seasons, will be 
free from ice. 

One hundred and twenty-boats are probably as many as can be passed 
through the locks in twenty-four hours. Though a single boat may be 
passed in less than twelve minutes, yet there would be so many circum- 
stances to create delay, when boats come to be continually passing, night 
and day, that ten or twelve minutes is as little as should be allowed for 
the passage of each boat. 

In the course of a few years after the Ohio Canal is opened, more 
boats will be strugghng for a passage than can get through without great 
delay. Double locks, at least at the junction, and a Canal on the 
north side of the Mohawk River, which is already in contemplation, must 
be made. 

These anticipations, as to the condition of the State, in eighteen hun- 
dred and thirty-six, — in regard to the debt, — and as to the revenue the 
Canals will produce, are founded on the supposition that no new debts are 
created for similar or other purposes. 


8't MEMOIR. 

The faith of the State as to the revenue pledged by the Constitution to 
the Canal Fund, and as to the tolls of the Canals now completed, should, 
and no doubt will, be held sacred to the extinguishment of the debt cre- 
ated for the construction of these Canals ; but it does not follow that the 
large surplus revenue the State will receive, after the present Canal debt 
is paid, may not be regarded as the basis of a new credit, on which to 
raise monies to be applied to further internal improvements, which, though 
they may not yield as large a revenue as the existing Canals, will be of 
great advantage to large portions of our population, who, till other com- 
munications be opened, will feel no other benefit from what has been done, 
than that they share in the general prosperity. 

It is the duty of a Government to distribute its favors as equally as 
possible. Canals should be made " to pass through every vale, and wind 
round every hill," if it can be done with a due regard to the present and 
future resources of the State. 

No maxim in political economy is so dangerous as that a public debt 
is a pubhc blessing. When we reflect that the debts of the European 
Governments, which doom most of them to an eternal bankruptcy, have 
been created to support wars, that determined nothing but who should 
be the people's masters, and impose upon them, new burthens, it is not 
wonderful that such a precept should be odious. It could only have been 
adopted where Governments require other support than the affections of 
their subjects. 

But, if it would not be as pernicious, it would, at least, be unwise, and un- 
just, to maintain that Government should contract no debt, however bene- 
ficial the object may be for the present, or in relation to the future. 

Had this State been, and were she always to be, governed by such a 
determination, the great works from which we, and our most remote de- 
scendants will derive such incalculable advantages, would not have been^ 
and could never be, executed. In truth, there seems no reason of policy 
or justice that ought to restrain a government from referring to posterity 
the payment of some portion of a debt, created more for their benefit than 
for that of the existing generation ; particularly when those of future times 
will have augmented means, arising not only from the object itself, for 
which the debt was incurred, but from increased population. For ex- 
ample : to pay the Canal debt, at this moment, would require from each 
citizen of the State, about five dollars. Supposing our population to 
double, in eighteen years, it would require, from each citizen, a contribu- 
tion of only two dollars and a half, to pay the debt at the expiration of that 
time. This is supposing that the Canals will yield only enough to pay the 
interest of the money borrowed on their account. But we have seen that 
they will do a great deal more. 

These reflections are not made so much in reference to the Canals 
already completed, as with a view to the great number of internal im- 
provements which we see, by the public papers, are contemplated. 

We have yet to consider the Canals in more interesting and important 
relations. They are intimately connected with our social and political 

The important act of eighteen hundred and seventeen, which esta- 
blished the Canal Fund, constituted a board of commissioners to manage it, 
and authorised the Canal commissioners to commence the Canals, is pre- 
faced by a declaration of the Legislature, which is an evidence that they 
did not engage in tliese important works, without correct and enlarged 


views of the advantages that would result from their completion. In the 
preamble to the above-mentioned Act, it is said, that •• navigable communi- 
cations between Lakes Erie and Champlain, by means of Canals connected 
with the Hudson, will promote agriculture and commerce, mitigate the 
calamities of war, and enhance the blessings of peace. — consolidate the 
union, advance the prosperity and elevate the character of the United 

Already have these anticipations been realised. The money spent in 
the construction of the Canals has enriched the inhabitants of the great 
portions of the State through which they pass. 

But their permanent influence on agriculture is much more important. 
The difference between what would have been the price of transporting a 
ton of wheat to the New York market before the Canals were made, and 
what it now costs, all goes to the profit of the agriculturist. The farmer 
of Le Roy, in Genesee county, who in eighteen hundred and nineteen, 
sold his wheat at thirty cents a bushel, now obtaiiK a doUar, there, for the 
same quantity. 

There are too, many products of the soil, which, unless they can be 
cheaply transported, are of no value ; but now, that the Canals are open, 
the distance from market may be almost computed by the distance from 
the Canal, or the distance from the water communications with it : so that 
the farmer at Cleveland, or Detroit, as to all beneficial purposes, is as 
near to the city of New York, as an inhabitant of Otsego county was four 
years ago. 

It is, for this reason, that farms near the Canal lines, have not as yet 
increased in price, as it was expected they would do. OwTiers of these 


lands have been selling them for less than it was thought they would at 
this time have commanded, because they found that for what they could 
obtain for an acre on the Canal, they could purchase five or six acres 
equally good in Ohio, the Michigan territory, or further west ; and that 
the price at home of the produce of the one, would be nearly equal to 
the price of the produce of the other, because the difference of the cos( 
of transportation to market would be inconsiderable. 

There is no fact that can more forcibly illustrate the advantages of 
Canal navigation to the agriculture of a country, than that which is related 
of the efTects of the Canals in Ireland, although they are on so limited a 
scale. To insure a competent supply of corn for the consumption of the 
city of Dublin, the Government paid, before the inland navigation to that 
city was opened, a bounty of one hundred thousand pounds Irish, for the 
transportation of corn to that capital ; '" but, in place of this being the 
case, that city has now become one of the first corn ports of Europe; 
and Ireland, in general, which half a century ago imported com to half a 
million per annum, has now a surplus produce in that article to the value 
of four millions of pounds sterling, per annum." 

The author of the article on inland navigation, in the Edinburgh En- 
cyclopcedia, seems to impute this astonishing change in the condition of 
Ireland, to the improvement of her internal water communications. Pos- 
sibly it is owing to the same cause that Ireland has of late been able to 
supply us with cargoes of potatoes. Probably we shall soon have it in our 
power to return the favor by sending her some from the county of Niagara or 
Green Bay. A cargo of bricks for building, from Antwerp, which is now land- 
ing on our wharves, we hope is among the last that will be brought to us 
across the Atlantic. Our supply of this article will undoubtedly be in- 


creased from the Canal countries, where, on account of the abundance of 
fuel, it can be manufactured at, comparatively, little cost. Besides, the use 
of bricks will, in some measure be, superseded by marble, of which there 
are such quantities and varieties on the Canals, and of which, already, so 
many private as well as public buildings are erected in our city. 

As an additional evidence of the advantages that Canals will be to 
agriculture, and at the same time to shew that their produce will be beyond 
any thing that was anticipated in their origin, because, they will be used 
for purposes not then contemplated, the commissioners mention, in one 
of their reports, that leached ashes, for manure, were transported from 
Fort Edward, on the Champlain Canal, to Long Island. The distance is 
near two hundred miles. 

As a further evidence that the Canals are used for purposes which, it 
is probable, never entered the minds of their projectors, it may be men- 
tioned here, though somewhat out of the course we were pursuing, that 
there are floating stores and taverns, on the Erie Canal. Among other things 
the traveller will unexpectedly meet, are a book store, and circulat- 
ing library, and a museum of living, as well as of inanimate natural curi- 
osities. These floating establishments remove from place to place on the 
Canal, as the owners think may be most to their advantage. 

The public papers apprize us, that there will arrive to-morrow, with 
the first Canal boat, a vessel called Noah's Ark, from the yet unbuilt city of 
Ararat, which is to arise on an island, near the western termination of the 
Canal. She will bring, it is said, to our metropolis, to gratify the curiosity 
of its inhabitants, specimens of all manner of living things, to be found in 
the forests that surround the Falls of Niagara. 

The Canals have been more used, hy travellers, than was anticipated. 
There are, upon the western Canal, a great number of boats, elegantly 
fitted up, which are entirely employed in carrying passengers. They 
travel at the rate of four miles an hour, a speed which the law, to prevent 
injury to the banks of the Canals, does not allow them to exceed. 

The fare is four cents a mile, for which excellent provisions and com- 
fortable lodgings are provided on board the boats. The price of a pas- 
sage from New York to Albany, one hundred and fifty miles, in the best 
steam packets, is four dollars: in other steam boats it is less, and in the 
steam tow-boats, as low as one dollar. So that a pci-son may travel from 
New York to BufTalo, with the utmost conjfort, and without fatigue, for 
about eighteen dollars. Indeed, for much loss, if he chooses to take the 
inferior steamboats on the river, and the freight boats, on the Canal, which 
carry passengers at a lower rate than the passage boats. This journey, of 
five hundred and thirteen miles, may be accomplished, by steam boats and 
Canal boats, in six days. 

Great complaints are made of the lowness of the bridges which cross 
the Canal, and which, to accommodate the inhabitants whose farms are 
frequently divided by it, are very numerous, and oblige passengers to 
leave the deck as often as they occur. But, it must be recollected, that 
the object of these Canals was not to accommodate passengers: they 
were not necessary for this purpose, when we have turnpike roads pver 
which a person may travel, with much greater speed, than can be permitted 
on the Canals. They were intended for the transportation of produce and 
merchandize. The bridges could not be made higher without much fur- 
ther expence, and great inconvenience to the farmers, for whose accommo- 
dation they were designed. On the other hand, bridges, not permanent, 
would subject the boats to great interruption and delay. When the 

Canals are as much occupied by freight boats, as unquestionably they 
will be in a very short time, they must be abaiicloned by all travellers, 
except those of mere curiosity. The interruptions in passing the locks, 
when the Canals are full of boats, will be so great, that those who wish to 
travel, with any expedition will prefer another mode of conveyance. 

The inexhaustible sources of living waters, from which the Canals are 
supplied, aflTord, in almost every part of their lines, a surplus, which, 
wherever they are raised above the level of the country, can be applied 
to move machinery. The privilege of using this water power, is leased, 
or sold, by the State, and so will materially augment the revenue from the 
Canals. But this is an inferior consideration compared to the advantages 
which agriculturists and manufacturers must derive from being furnished 
vdth these means of moving their mills and machinery. Manufacturing 
establishments, of great importance, are starting up throughout the extent 
of the Canals. 

There are some manufactures which the traveller may observe near 
the Canals, which, though apparently of no great consequence, yet are 
so new and ingenious, as not to be undeserving of notice. 

The city of New York, and, indeed, most parts of the State, are now 
supplied with pails and tubs, and wooden ware of that description, made 
by turning lathes, and other machinery, moved by water. In our neighbour- 
ing county of West Chester, there are fields, enclosed by fences curiously 
put together, in pannels, on the borders of our artificial rivers, and, after 
being transported several hundred miles, were purchased for much less 
than any other fence, equally good, could be made for, near where they 
are used. 

Those who apprehended that the Canals would be injurious to the 
(artners living near the city, and making; no use of them, and who supposed 
that the value of the produce of the southern counties would be depre- 
ciated by supplies which would, by means of the Canals, be brought 
cheaply to the market from a distance, find that their tears, in these re- 
spects, were groundless. The increase of the population of the city, 
keeps pace with the increase of supplies. There is already another New 
York grown up from that which existed before the Canals were com- 
menced, and the demand for the provisions of the southern farmers is 
as great as it was when thoy had the monopoly of the market. At tiie 
same time the money they receive is increased in value by the diminution 
of the price of labor, and of commodities. The wives and daughters of 
Delaware county, will sell their butter and cheese for as much as they 
could have obtained if there were no Canals, and will buy American 
cottons, their ribbands and gowns, at a less price ; while their husbands 
and fathers will find the expcnces of cultivation diminished. 

The vast quarries of marble, and beds of gypsum, — the inexhaustible 
mines of iron ore, and the immeasurable forests, which are contiguous to 
the Canals, indicate how advantageous they would be, even if their effects 
were conlined to our own State: but when we see the connections 
they will form with boundless fields producing raw materials, and 
with markets, the human mind is hardly capable of comprehending 
the extent to which they will promote agriculture, manufactures, and 

We see, with astonishment, the progress already made in populating 
regions which only yesterday, it may be said were uninhabited. Already 
the whole Canal line is occupied. Almost at every turn in its course 


the traveller will find a village presented to his view, about which every- 
thing indicates, by the newness of its appearance, that it is but the growth 
of a few months. He will frequently see, on the borders of the Canal, a 
large excavation for a basin, intended for the port of a town, which he will 
perceive by the scale on which the streets are laid out, by the preparations 
for public buildings, and private stores, and warehout^es, is considered as 
the foundation of a great city, the founders of which may fancy that they, 
or their posterity, will date " ab urbi condita," thougli the scite is still over- 
shadowed by the forests, wljich (here has not been time to clear from 
the back grounds. It is indeed curious to observe, in some places, houses of 
no mean appearance, erecting and marking the lines of spacious streets, 
from which the stumps of the trees, on which the timber employed in the 
buildings may have grown, are not eradicated. 

The founders of each of these nascent cities, anticipate that the spot 
they have selected, has advantages which will insure it a growth and 
prosperity equal to other places whose origin is similar: Utica, Rochester, 
and Buffalo, now of importance, and commanding a great trade, were 
but a few years ago as new as any of those which are starting with a hope 
to rival the elder offspring of the Canals. 

The effects that facilitating communications will have on the social 
habits and feelings of our citizens, is not one of the least advantages we 
shall derive from these works. Formerly the inhabitants of our sea-board, 
and of our northern and western territory, were almost strangers to each 
other. We thought, and spoke of the borders of the Lakes as of some dis- 
tant territory, a journey to which was not so often made, as a voyage across 
the Atlantic. But the great commercial relations, which at present exist 
between every part of the State, oblige our citizens to have frequent per- 
sonal intercourse ; and, out of this, grow kindly sentiments, that never 

can exist between those who have no common interest, and have no 
intimacy. Now, a citizen of New York thinks much less of a journey to 
Buffalo, than he did formerly of going to Albany ; and persons who never 
w^ould have known each other, daily mix in our familiar circles, wilh mutual 
good feelings. 

All the great and wise men who have been concerned in projecting and 
executing these works, and others, of a similar nature, have made tlie im- 
portant effects, which the improvement of the means of internal intercourse 
would have on our political institutions, a theme of their writings. We 
have seen with what zeal Washington devoted himself to forming water 
communications between the west and the south, with a view to their 
political effects; — the territory we now possess, extending from the Atlan- 
tic to the Pacific; from Key West to the Saint Croix, more than twenty. 
six degrees of latitude, and embracing two milhons of square miles, could 
not have been retained under one Government, if we had no other means 
of water communication than existed twenty years ago. Natural barriers 
must have divided us into as many distinct Governments, as there would 
have been distinct interests. Why should the trans-Allegany States have 
remained united with those on the Atlantic, when the mountains rendered 
all profit tble intercourse between them impracticable ? Nay ! the different 
sections of our own State were becoming estranged from each other: we 
may all remember when a division of this State was the subject of 
familiar conversation. The Saint Lawrence was the high road to the 
only market the inhabitants of our western territory could reach ; and 
Montreal, if not under her present form of Government, under some other, 
would soon have been to them, what New York now is. 

But the establishment of steam navigation, and the opening of Canals, 
have not only consohdated the interests of our own State, but indissolubly 


united every part of the Union. It is impossible to dwell on this part of 
the subject, without repeating language which has been used by those 
who have been the advocates of the Canals Governor Clinton, in his 
speech, at the opening of the Session, in eighteen hundred and nineteen, 
presents the subject to the Legislature in the following eloquent words, 
" In the United States our liberty and our Union are inseparably con- 
nected ; a dismemberment of the Republic into separate confederacies, 
would necessarily produce the jealous circumspection, and hostile prepa- 
rations, of bordering States : large standing armies would be immediately 
raised, — increasing and vindictive wars would follow, — and a military des- 
potism would reign triumphant on the ruins of civil liberty ; a dissolution 
of the Union may, therefore, be considered as the natural death of our 
free Government, and to avert this awful calamity, all local prejudices and 
geographical distinctions should be discarded. The people should be 
habituated to frequent intercourse and beneficial intercommunication, and 
the whole Republic ought to be bound together by the golden ties of com- 
merce, and the adamantine chains of interest. 

" When the western Canal is finished, and a communication is formed 
between Lake Michigan and Illinois River, or between the Ohio and the 
waters of Lake Erie, the greater part of the United States will form one 
vast island, susceptible of circumnavigation, to the extent of many thousand 
miles. The most distant parts of the confederacy will then be in a state 
of approximation, and the distinction of eastern and western, and southern 
and northern interests, will be entirely prostrated. To be instrumental in 
producing so much good, by increasing the stock of human happiness — by 
establishing the perpetuity of free government, — and by extending the 
empire of improvement, of knowledge, of refinement, and of religion, is an 
ambition worthy of a free people. The most exalted reputation is that 
which arises from the dispensation of happiness to our fellow creatures ; 

and that conduct is most acceptable to God, which is most beneficial to 
man. Character is as important to States, as to individuals, and the glory 
of a Republic, founded on the promotion of the general good is the com- 
mon property of all its citizens." 

Among those who have written on this subject, no one appears more 
clearly to have seen, or more forcibly to have urged the advantages of 
navigable communications in relation to our Government and Union, than 
the late Robert Fulton. 

When Mr. Gallatin was about forming the Report before mentioned, 
which he made to Congress, in eighteen hun«lred and eiglit, ho addressed 
one of the circulars, by which he sought information, to Mr. Fulton, who. 
after having enumerated, in his answer, the economical advantages of roads 
and Canals says, " numerous have been the speculations on the duration 
of our Union, and intrigues have been practised to sever the western from 
the eastern States. The opinion endeavoured to be inculcated was, that 
the inhabitants beyond the moimtains were cut oflf from the market of 
the Atlantic States; that, consequently, they had a separate interest, and 
should use their resources to open a communication of their own ; that 
remote from the seat of Government, they could not enjoy their portion of 
advantages arising from the Union, and that sooner or later they must sepa- 
rate, and govern for themselves. 

" Others, by drawing their examples from European governments, and 
the monarchies which have grown out of the feudal habits of nations of 
warriors, whose minds were bent to the absolute power of the few, and the 
servile obedience of the many, have conceived these states of too great 
an extent to continue united under a republican form of government ; and 

that the time is not distant when they will divide into little kingdoms, 



retrograding from common sense to ignorance, adopting all the follies and 
barbarities which are every day practised in the kingdoms and petty states 
of Europe. 

" But those who have reasoned in this way, have not reflected that men 
are the creatures of habit, and that their habits, as well as their interests, 
may be so combined as to make it impossible to separate them without 
falhng back into a state of barbarism. 

" Although, in ancient times, some specks of civilization have been 
effaced by hordes of uncultivated men, yet it is remarkable, that since the 
invention of printing and the general diffusion of knowledge, no nation has 
retrograded in science or improvements ; nor is it reasonable to suppose 
that the Americans, who have as much, if not more information in general, 
than any other people, will ever abandon an advantage which they have 
once gained. 

" England, which was at one time seven petty kingdoms, has by long 
habit been united into one. Scotland, by succession, became united to 
England, and is now bound to her by habit, by turnpike roads, canals, and 
reciprocal interests. 

" In like manner, all the counties of England, or departments of France, 
are bound to each other ; and when the United States shall be bound toge- 
ther by Canals, by cheap and easy access to a market in all directions, by 
a sense of mutual interests arising from mutual intercourse and mingled 
commerce, it will be no more possible to split them into independent and 
separate governments, each lining its fronti'TS with fortifications and troops, 
to shackle their own exports and imports to and from the neighbouring 
States, than it is now possible for the Government of England to divide, 


and form again into seven kingdoms. But it is necessary to bind the states 
together by the people's interests, one of which is to enable e%ery man to 
sell the produce of his labor at the best market, and purchase at the 
cheapest. This accords with the idea of Hume. '' that the Government of 
a wise people would be little more than a system of civil police : for the 
best interest of man is industry and a free exchange of the produce of his 
labor, for the things which he may require. 

"On this humane principle, what stronger bonds of union can be in- 
vented, than those which enable each individual to transport the produce 
of his industry, twelve hundred miles, for sixty cents the hundred weight.-* 
Here then, is a certain method of securing the union of the States, and of 
rendering it as lasting as the continent we inhabit." 

At the conclusion of a work on Canals, which Mr. Fulton published in 
England, in seventeen hundred and ninety-six, he subjoins a letter ad- 
dressed by him, at that time, to the Governor of Pennsylvania, (Thomas 
Mitflin, Esq.) in which he urges that State to open Canal communications 
from the Lakes to the Atlantic waters. In this, he says, '• 1 hope I shall 
see the time when Canals will pass through every vale, wind round each 
hill, and bind the whole country together in bonds of social intercourse." 

Had this philanthropic, patriotic, and enlightened citizen been spared 
liut a few years, his anticipations, in part, at least, would have been 
realised. The Erie, Champlain, and Ohio Canals, are but the commence- 
ment of a system, the progress of which nothing can arrest. In our own 
State the Lacawaxen Canal, from the head waters of the Delaware, to the 
Hudson, is nearly completed a Canal from Oswego, on Lake Ontario, to the 
Erie Canal, and a Canal to make more perfect communications between 
the Cayuga and Seneca Lakes, and the Erie Canal, are in great forwardness. 


At the last Session of the Legislature, a law was passed, authorising 
surveys, for seventeen Canals, in different parts of the State. 

The Legislature had a just estimate of the work in which they were 
about to engage, when, in the preamble to their act of eighteen hundred 
and seventeen, they said the completion of these enterprises will elevate 
the character of the United States. It must do so, when it is considered, 
that the New York Canals have been executed by a single Member of the 
Union, which, less than fifty years ago, was a Colony, with a population 
not exceedin"- two hundred thousand ; that of that time eight years have 
been passed in struggles for independence, and three years in a war to 
which she was a party with the most powerful nation on earth. 

But, whatever may be thought abroad, we cannot but have a just pride 
in the execution of works, which are not surpassed. Posterity will look 
back to those who transmitted these blessings, with admiration and vener- 
ation. The Iburth of November, eighteen hundred and twenty-five, when 
we shall for the first time, have in our harbour boats from Lake Erie, will 
ever live in the memories of a grateful people ; and the splendor with 
which that event will be celebrated by the City of New York, will be re- 
membered, as an evidence of the patriotism and hberality of her citizens 
and magistrates. 


The learned writer of the preceding Memoir hiis, probably through delicacy, made two omis- 
sions which the Committee deem it their duty to supply. 

In page eleven of the Memoir, a reference is made to a Report, submitted as early as the 
year seventeen hundred and twenty-four, to the Colonial Governor, by the then Surveyor 
General of the Province o'' .N'ew York. In the next page, the author of the Report to Governor 
Burnet, is designated as the Historian of the Five Indian J^ations. And in page twenty-eight he 
is again referred to as the Surveyor General <f the Province, <^c. His name, however, is no 
where mentioned in the Memoir. 

The Report alluded to is a most able document. It is entitled " A Memorial concerning 
" the Fur-trade of the Province of New York, presented to his Excellency William Burnet, 
" Esq. Captain General and Governor, &c. by Cadwallader Colden, Surveyor General of the 
" said Province, the tenth of November, seventeen hundred and tiventy-four." 

In this Report the author not only describes the water-courses and portages between this 
and Canada, and those between us and the great western Lakes, with wonderful accuracy, but 
presents, in the clearest manner, the immense facilities which these water communications are 
susceptible of affording to our internal trade. He also carries his views beyond the Lakes to 
the Mississippi, and after stating that " many of the branches of that river come so near to the 
" branches of the rivers which empty themselves into the great Lakes, that in sever;d places 
" there is but a short land carriage from the one to the other ;" he concludes with the follow- 
ing emphatic observation : — " If one considers the length of this river (the Mississippi), and 
" its numerous branches, he must say, that by means of this river and the Lakes, there is opened to 
" his viera such a scene of inland navigation as cannot be paralleled in any other part of the world." 

100 NOTE. 

The Report will be found at length in his History of the Five Indian Nations, printed in 
London, in seventeen hundred and forty-seven. A map is attached to the work, shewing the 
Lakes, the proximity of many of the important water-streams to them, and the portages or carry- 
ing places. 

Mr. Colden was the Lieutenant Governor of the Province of New York for many years, 
and the administration of the Government repeatedly devolved upon him, by the death or ab- 
sence of several Governors in Chief He was a man of great ability and probity, and main- 
tained a literary and philosophical correspondence with Linnasus, Dr. Franklin, Gronovius, Dr. 
Pottersfield, Dr. Whittle of Edinburgh, Mr. Peter CoUison, F. R. S. of London, and other 
distinguished men of the age. His life will be found in Dr. Rees' Cyclopoedia, Phil. Ed. 
Vol. LX. 

The writer of the Memoir, who is the grandson of Governor Colden, has, perhaps, with 
propriety, omitted to introduce his own name. The work, however, which he has prepared 
at the request of the Committee of the Corporation, shews his high estimate of the Canal 

It is, nevertheless, due to him to state, that he was one of a Committee who, in eighteen 
liundred and fifteen, was appointed by a 3Ieeting of citizens, in the City of New York, to 
draw a Memorial to the Legislature in favor of the contemplated western and northern Canals. 
In eighteen hundred and eighteen Mr. Colden was elected one of the Vice Presidents of the 
" New York Corresponding Association for the Promotion of Internal Improvements." 

In the same year, eighteen hundred and eighteen, he represented the City of New York in 
the Assembly of the State, and drafted the answer to the speech of Governor Clinton ; a part 
of that answer is contained in the Memoir, pages fifty-one — fifty-three, and shows the then 
views of Mr. Colden on the great work, the completion of which we have lately celebrated. 

In eighteen hundred and twenty-four Mr. Colden was elected a Member of the Senate, from 
the first Senatorial District, and in that pubhc station, which he yet fills, he has lost no oppor- 
tunity to advance the cause of internal improvements. In eighteen hundred and twenty-five he 
was chosen one of a joint Committee of the Senate and Assembly, and assisted to compile that 
invaluable collection of official documents, consisting of two octavo volumes, entitled "Laws of 

NOTE. 101 

" the State of New York in relation to the Erie and Champlain Canals, together with the Annual 
" Reports of the Canal Commissioners, and other Documents requisite for a Complete OflBcial 
" History of those Works ; also correct Maps, dehneating the Routes of the Erie and Cham- 
" plain Canals, and designating the lands through nhich they pass." This collection is referred 
to in the Memoir, pages fifty-eight and fifty-nine. The Committee conclude by remarking, that 
Mr. Colden, as a private citizen, and in his official station, has, throughout, shewn himself the 
zealous and constant friend of every measure which was calculated to open to us that vast 
" ititand navigation'" which his grandfather, more than a century ago, so ably described. 

\VM. A. DAVIS I Committee of the Corporation of the 

' / Citv of New York. 




November Ith, 1825. 

His Honor, the Mayor, submitted to the Common Council the Memoir 
of the Honorable Cadwallader D. Colden, 

Whereupon, it was resolved unanimously, 

That the thanks of the Board be presented to Mr. Colden, for the 
ability and impartiality with which he has prepared a Memoir on the sub- 
ject of our Canals, at the request of the Common Council, and for the use 
of the Corporation. 

And to mark the estimation of the Board for his able and laborious 

It is ordered, 

That this Resolution be printed with the Memoir, and be elegantly 
engrossed and splendidly framed, and presented to him in the name of 
the Common Council : and, as a further testimony of respect, that the 
Committee transmit to Mr. Colden, in behalf of this Board, A Medal, 
of the highest Class, which shall be struck to commemorate the com- 
pletion of the Great State Work, which unites our Lakes with the 


J. MORTON, Clerk. 


A :?^ 

HSMi /■ 


.,i»;n.K -^'O-aE I.' our 


^ 17 IB 2j 2 i^ 32 23 UJ 
















4-c. 4-c. 4-f. 










Henry I. Wvckoff, 


Elisha W. King, 


William. H. Ireland, 


Samuel Cowdrev, 


John Webb, 


Matthew Reed, 


Asa Mann, 


Jacob B. Taylor, 


William A. Davis, 


Gideon Ostrander 


Thomas Bolton. 

Samuel St. John. 
Philip Hone. 
John Agnew. 
William Burtsell 
JosiAH Hedden. 
Jameson Cox. 
Daniel E. Duxscomb. 
Effingham Schieffelij 
William P. 



Hon. PHILIP HONE, Mayor. 




John Yates Cebra, 


Samuel Gilford, jun. 


Campbell P. White, 


John Agnew, 


Anthony Lamb, 


Matthew Reed, 


Jameson Cox, 


Daniel E. Dt^NScoMB, 


Jacob B. Taylor, 


Gideon Ostrander, 


William P. Rathbone, 


William A. Davis, 

Thomas Bolton. 
William W. Mott. 
Pierre C. Van Wyck. 
John Hitchcock. 
Henry Arcularius. 
John Lozier. 
William S. Coe. 
Philip W. Engs. 
John R. Peters. 
Abraham Valentine. 
Lemuel Pittman. 
Effingham Schieffelin. 

*^* The Legislature, at the hist Session, divided the City of New York into txpelve Wards, 
diich is the cause of twelve Aldermen and twelve Assistants being returned for the year 1826. 



On the sixteenth day of January, eighteen humh-ed and tiventy-six, the day on wliich the 
uewly elected Mayor was to take the oath of office, the Common Council assembled in the 
Common Council Chamber, 

The Honorable William Paildixg, Mayor, President. 

After the minutes of the preceding meeting, at which the Mayor was chosen, were read, 
his Honor, the Mayor, William Paulding, Esq. informed the Board that Philip Hone, Esq. the 
Maj'or elect, was in attendance, and proposed taliin^ the oath of office in presence of the 
Common Council : it was then moved and agreed to. that a Committee be appointed to wait 
upon the Mayor, elect, and conduct him to the Common Council Chiunbor ; accordingly the 
President appointed Mr. SchiefTelin, Mr. Van Wyck, and Alderman Cobra, the Committee. 
Those gentlemen retired, and in a few minutes returned with Mr. Hone ; the members rose 
on his entrance, and Mr. SchiefTelin, of the Committee, introduced him to the President as the 
Mayor elect. 

Mr. Paulding then administered to 3Ir. Hone the oath of office, prescribed by the Charter 
and the Constitution of the State, and handed him to the President's Chair. Mr. Paulding then 
delivered the following address : — 

" I am pleased, Mr. Mayor, with the opportunity afforded me of inducting into office a 
citizen, in whom there CiUi, with s^ifety, be reposed a just conhdence ; and 1 sincerely hope that 
your elevation to this distinguished trust, will conduce ahke to your own, and the public grati- 

" Mr. President, and Gentlemen of the Common Council, T bid you a respectful farewell : 
may your labours be such as to promote the prosperity and happiness of this community." 

After which Mr. Paulding withdrew. 

The newly installed Mayor, after a few minutes, then rose and delivered the following 
address : — 

" Gentlemen, — In assuming the office of Chief Magistrate of my native City, I should be 
doing injustice to my feelings were I to omit the offering of my grateful acknowledgments for 
the distinguished honor you have conferred upon me, and I am persuaded you will consider the 
most suitable expression of my thanks to consist in the cheerful acceptance of the office, with 
a determination to devote my best abilities to the performance of its duties. 

" My experience as a Member of the Board h;is made me acquainted with the arduous and 
important nature of the services which you, Gentlemen, have undert;iken to perform ; the same 
experience has also taught me how much depends upon the punctual and fliithful discharge of 
your duties as Members of the several standing Committees. The municipal concerns of 
our city have increased to so great an extent as to render it impossible for the Board to 
bestow upon the various subjects requiring its consideration, all the attention which they may 
merit, and we must rely upon the Standing Committees for that careful scrutiny, by which alone 
we may escape the errors of hasty legislation. 

" It is to be hoped that the addition to the Board of the Representatives of two new Wards, 
while it serves in some measure to diminish, by dividing your labors, will furnish us with much 
additional valuable information, respecting the local wants of the increasing population of the 
upper part of the City, and will tend to promote a good understanding between the several 
sections here represented. 

" There can be no doubt, Gentlemen, that you will pursue your labours in a spirit of devo- 
tion to the public good ; and with that mutual harmony, without which your best directed efforts 
would lose much of their efficacy. 

" Finding myself surrounded on this interesting occasion by many of my old associates, and 
among the new Members of the Board by many of my personal friends, I trust an apology will 
not be thought necessary for m;iking these suggestions. 

" I owe it to my respected predecessor to acknowledge the valuable information which I 
have received from him since my election, and the urbanity and kindness with which it has been 


" I shall rely with entire contidence upon your zoalnus co-opernlion and support, but I fear 
I shall have frequent occasions to claim your liberal indulgence, Ibr the errors and omissions of 
inexperience, in the discharge of the important duties which have devolved upon nie.'' 

As soon as the President sat down the tbllowing resolution was submitted to the Common 
Council, by Mr. Assistant Schieffehn, and passed unanimuvshj. 

" Whereas, the Common Council is desirous of retaining a grateful and lasting remembrance 
of the official Ijdehty, abihty, and integrity of the Honorable William Paulding, Esquire, late 
Mayor, Resolved, as a testimonial of the same, that the Committee on Arts and Sciences com- 
municate to him a request, that he may permit a Portrait of himself to be tiikcn by an eminent 
artist, under the direction of the said Committee, and that the siime, when finished, be placed in 
the Picture Gallery of the City Hall.'" 


J. MORTON', Clerk. 






A'ovciiilcr 10, lb2o. 

The Recorder presented the lollowing Report, as Chairman of the Commiltce appointed by 
the Common Council, to commemorate the completion of the Grand Erio Canal, which unite* 
the waters of the great Lakes with the Atlantic ocean. 

The Comniiifee of the Corporation of the Cit^^ of \cu- York, to whom it «as referred to 
concert measures to commemorate the great event of uniting our inland seas with the ocean, in 
a manner corresponding with its vast national importance, with the feelings and wishes of 
their fellow citizens, and with the honor of the City, 


That the Celebration, both by land and by water, has been in a style of unusual magnificence 
and splendor : That it has so far tmnsoended all anticipations, and been so ably conducted, by the 
gentlemen to whom it was more imaicdiatcly confided. ;,s to require a full and cletailed Report. 

The Committee, therefore, respectfully reconunend the adoplion of the following Resolu- 
tions : — 

" Resolved, — That a select Committee be appointed to make a full and del;iiled Report to 
this Board, in relation to the late Celebration by the City of New York, of the completion of 
the Erie Canal. 

" Resolved, — That the said Committee report to this Board, the names of, and tlie duties 
assigned to, the several gentiemen who distinguished themselves in aid of the muaicipal autho- 



rities of the City, and what, in the opinion of the said Committee, will be an appropriate tribute 

of respect for services thus rendered. 

" By order of the Committee, 

•' R. RIKER, Chairman of the Committee." 

Which was approved, and the Resolutions adopted. 

The Mayor appointed the original Committee, viz. : — 

Alderman MANN, 
Alderman DAVIS, 
IMr. Assistant BOLTON, 
3Ir. Assistant AGNEW. 


The Committee of the Corporation of the City of New York, to whom the (hities contained in 
the preceding Resolutions were referred, 

Respectfully report. 

That they have supposed that the wishes of the Common Council will be most satisfactorily 
carried into effect, by tlie Committee reporting to the Board all the preparatory arrangements 
which were made to commemorate the groat event of uniting the Lakes with the Atlantic 
ocean ; and that instead of the Committee giving a detailed account of the unparalleled magnifi- 
cence and grandeur of the Celebration, it would be belter to refer to the special and separate 
Reports of the gentlemen, under whose direction it was conducted. 

That, by adopting this course, your Committee would be enabled to do more ample justice 
to the different societies and classes of their fellow citizens, who united with the municipal 
authorities of the City ; that, it would give your Committee, a wider scope to furnish to the 
Board a distinct account of the means employed to give effect to a great civic Celebration ; and, 
that it would not be without its use, by shewing to posterity how cheertully, at this day, the 
magistrate and the citizen unite in the exultations and in the duties of patriotism. 

These preparatory arrangements for celebrating the completion of the great Canals, will be 
found in the documents which follow. They are classed in the order of time in which they 
took place, and will explain themselves. 


The Committee, therelbrc, content themselves with submitting to the Common Council the 
following brief statement — that, in making the arrangements for the " Grand Canal Celebration, 
by the City of New York," they were assisted by Sub-committees, representing the Merchants 
and Citizens, the several Mechanic Societies, the Mihtary, the Fire Department, the Literary 
and Scientific Institutions, the 3Iembers of the Bar, the Steam-boat Companies, the .''arine and 
Nautical Societies, the Pilots, Bargemen, and Whitehall Watermen, and other Associations. 

That, in order to enable the Corporation to contribute its utmost to commemorate the great 
event, large portions of its members were detailed upon Committees. Alderman Daris and 
Alderman King, were selected to represent the Corporation at Buffalo, and to assure the Com- 
mittees of that place, and the Committees along the whole line of the Can^il, that the City of New 
York would gladly receive them, as well as our bretlircn of the north, and from every part of 
the State, with the warmest affection and respect. Upon the Canal boats entering the waters of 
the Hudson river. Alderman Davis and Alderman King were also authorised, in the name of the 
Common Council, to invite all the Committees to proceed with them, and under their care, to 
the City of New York, where they should be received as guests of the City. 

Tliis invitation was accepted, and the stoam-boat Chancellor Livingston, under the com- 
mand of Captain Lockwood, was appropriated by the Corporation of the City of New York, for 
the use of their Special Committee and their invited guests. Alderman Divis and Alderman 
King conducted every thing confided to them in a manner no less acceptable to our visitors, 
than honorable to themselves and to the Common Council. 

Alderman Wyckoff, and Mr. Assistant Hone, were detailed to meet Alderman Davis and 
Alderman King, with the Committees from the west and the north, as they, with the Canal boats^ 
entered the Hudson river. They were directed to tender to them, in the name of the Corporation 
of the City of New York, every facility which they might require in passing down the river 
to our City. This Committee executed its duties to the entire satisfaction of the Common 
Council. Mr. Assistant Hone delivered, in the Capitol, at Albany, to the assembled Committees, 
an appropriate address, which will be found in the report of that Committee. The answer of 
Lieuteniint-Govcrnor Tallmadge is also subjoined thereto. 

Alderman Cowdrey, Alderman Webb, Mr. Assistant Hedden, and Mr. Assistant Agnew, were 
appointed a Sub-committee, to meet the flotilla from the Lakes, as they entered the waters of 

the City of New York. 


For the above purpose, the steam-boat W;xshington, bearing the large flag of the City, was 
employed by the Corporation. Captain E. S. Bunker commanded her, ;md, with tlie Com- 
mittee, met the fleet of boats from the Lukes, at sun-rise of the morning of the fourth of November, 
eighteen himdred and twenty-five. 

The hailing, and other nautical proceeihngs, will be found in Mr. Rhind's Report. The> 
were conducted by Captain Bunker, from the deck of the Washington, in behalf of the City, 
and Mr. Rhlnd, from the deck of tlie Chancellor Livingston, in behalf of the flotilla from the 
Lakes. Alderman Cowdrey, delivered an address to Governor Clinton, and to the Committees 
/rom the west and north, and along the line, whicli w:us answered by his Excellency in appro- 
priate terms. The address <md reply follow the Report of that Conmiittee. 

The novelty of the scene, the magnitude of the occasion, and the unexampled spectacle of 
seeing a mixed assemblage of steam-boats, c;mal-boats, pilot-boats, ships, and barges, all elegantly 
dressed, — moving in the most perfect order, — obeying, with the utmost exactness, the pre- 
viously arranged signals, and displaying themselves upon our Bay, whuh is not surpassed by iuiy 
in the world, induced the ladies of our city, almost universally, to join in the Celebration. 

The barge Lady Chnton, attached to the steam-boat Commerce, commanded by Captain J. 
Seymour, was especially devoted to the matrons of our City, and to their diiughters. .\ select 
Committee of the Corporation was appointed to attend them. The Committee were Alderman 
Reed, Mr. Assistant St. John, Mr. Assistant Dunscomb, iMr. Assist;int Burtsell, and Mr. Assistant 

Every precaution was used to prevent any accident. The barge was safely seoired to the 
Commerce, and being superbly decorated, and crowded with ladies, elegantly attired, presented 
a most beautiful spectacle. The barge, with the ladies, proceeded to the ocean in the line of 
the fleet, and returned in its order. Sucli a sight was never before beheld. 

The Sub-committee conducted every thing connected with their duties, in the most appro- 
priate and respectful manner, and have received the thanks of the ladies for their kind and 
pohte attentions. Your Committee refer for further details on this subject to the Report of that 



The steam-boat Fulton, Captain R. S. Bunker, and the steam-boat Providence, Captain 
Toailinson, were also employed by the Corporation, for the use of their guests. 

When the whole fleet were about to pass from the waters of the City, and enter the arm of 
the ocean, below the Narrows, Alderman King and Alderman Taylor were deputed a select 
Committee, to wait upon his Excellency the Governor, the Lieutenant-Governor, and the Com- 
mittees from the west and the north, and from every part of the State. The Governor, 
Lieutenant-Governor, and Committees, were still on board the Chancellor Livingston, which, as 
before stated, had been employed by the Corporation to conduct them to the City. Alderman 
King had left the Chancellor Livingston, and come on board the Washington, to join his Honor, 
the Mayor, and the Corporation. The Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, and the Committees, 
were conducted through the waters of the City in the Chancellor Livingston, under the care of 
the several Sub-committees of the Corporation before named. As the Governor is the consti- 
tutional Admiriil of the navy of the State, it was thought most appropriate to receive him on 
board the Wasliington, as she was about to enter the arm of the ocean, and, at that moment, he, 
with the Lieutenant-Governor, and all the Committees, left the Chancellor Livingston, conducted 
by Alderman King and Alderman Taylor, and came on board the Washington. 

His Honor, the Blayor, representing the Corporation, received them, in the name of the 
City, and congratulated them on the completion of the great State Work, which we were then 
celebrating; and assured his Excellency the Governor, the Lieutenant-Governor, and all the 
Committees, that the City of New York rejoiced to meet them, and would gladly show them 
every mark of respect and hospitality. 

The Committee have the satisfaction to state, that these sentiments of affectionate regard, so 
justly expressed by the Cliief Magistrate of our City, in behalf of the City, have been recipro- 
cated by the Governor, the Lieutenant-Governor, and by our brethren of the country, in terms, 
the most flattering to the City, and gratifying to the Corporation. 

The most disting\iished respect was shewn by (he officers of the army and navy of the 
United States, to the Corporation. They united ardently with the City Authorities in the Cele- 
bration; national salutes were fired from the pubUc ships, and from the forts. 

Your Committee cannot but observe, in this place, that so long as the army and navy of our 
conntrv continue to identify themselves with their fellow-citizens, and pursue the path of patri- 

otism and honor, as they have heretofore done, they will live in the gxate'iil recollections of the 
Republic and of the people. 

Upon the fleet entering the arm of the ocean, it was saluted by the United States armed 
schooner, the Porpoise, under the command of Lieutenant Zantzinger, after which Governor 
Clinton poured the waters of Lake Erie into the sea, and Dr. Mitchill mingled therewith the 
waters from different quarters of the world, as emblematic of our commercial intercourse with 
every part of the globe. The speech of Governor CUnton, and that of Dr. Mitchill, will be 
found in the sequel. 

The Committee of the Corporation then waited upon Mr. Colden, for the Memoir, « liicli, 
at their reque.-t, he hid written upon the occasion. The Memoir Wiis delivered by Mr. Colden, 
to his Honor, the Mayor, in the presence of the Committee. The observations made by Mr. 
Colden upon presenting the Memoir to the Mayor, are mentioned in the Preface. The Mayor 
assured him, in behalf of the Common Council, that he received it with great satisfaction, and 
that il should be laid before the Board, at its next meeting. 

By the arrangements which had been made to commemorate the completion of the New 
York Canals, it will appear that, at a meeting of the Committee of the Corporation, assisted by 
Sub-committees from the Merchants and Citizens, the Military, the Fire Department, the Nau- 
tical, Marine, and other Societies, held at the Recorder's Office, in the City Hall, on the 
seventeenth day of October, eighteen hundred and twenty-five, Major-General Fleming was 
chosen the Grand Marshal, to conduct the Procession through the City, and Charles Rhind, 
Esq. was announced as having been appointed by the Committee of the Corporation to direct the 
aquatic display. 

The means adopted by these gentlemen, to carry into successful effect their ardiiou'! duties, 
and the names of the Oificers and Committees of the respective Societies, will be found in their 

To General Fleming, and to Mr. Rhind, your Committee cannot do adequate justice. So 
able, judicious, and accurate were the arrangements concerted by them, and so exactly were 
those arrangements carried into effect, that the Grand Procession through the City, and the 
Grand Aquatic Display presented One Entire Whole, surpassing in novelty, magnificence, and 
grandeur, any exhibition which is recorded in history. 

The Procession through the City was composed of nearly seven thousand citizens, of dif- 
ferent Societies, with massy cars, bearing their respective standards and the implements of their 
arts. It passed through columns of people, whose numbers exceeded one hundred thousand. 
The procession was entirely civic. The citizens were left to their own guidance, yielding 
only a willing homage to social order, and to the laws. It was a sublime spectacle. So strict 
was this vast assemblage in the voluntary observance of their duty as good citizens, that the 
Grand Marshal of the day, moved the whole procession, with the celerity, almost, of a dis- 
ciplined army. In his telegraphic communications with the aquatic party, he was constantly 
ahead of time. In every respect the Procession, through the City, has received universal 
approbation ; and, what is of much more consequence, all enhghtened and philanthrophic 
men will point to this example, to show, how a well-informed people can govern them- 

The Aquatic Display transcended all anticipations. Twenty-nine steam-boats, gorgeously 
dressed, with barges, ships, pilot-boats, canal-boats, and the boats of the Whitehall watermen, 
conveying thousands of ladies and gentlemen, presented a scene which cannot be described. 
Add to this, the reflections which arise from the extent and beauty of our Bay — the unusual 
calmness and mildness of the day — the splendid miinner in which all the shipping in the harbour 
were dressed, and the movement of the whole flotilla. Regulated by previously arranged sig- 
nals, the fleet were thrown at pleiisure, into squadron or hne, into curves or circles. The 
whole appeared to move as by magic. 

It was impossible to behold this wonderful movement upon the waters, unaided by a breath of 
air, without feeling how vast a debt of gratitude we owe, and the whole world owes, to the 
mighty genius of our immortal countryman, Robert Fulton. 

The Committee conclude by recommending that an appropriate vote of thanks be passed, by 
the Common Council, to all who have aided the municip;U authorities of the City, in the late 
Celebration : that, in the distribution of the medids, and other testimoniiils of respect, the 
several Societies, their officers and Committees, be duly noticed : that each of the officers of the 
army and navy of the United States, on this station, be presented with a medal; and that a 
copy of Mr. Colden's Memoir of the New York Canals, elegantly bound, be given to the respec- 
tive commandants at this place, as a testimony of the high respect which the Corporation 
entertain for the army and navy of our country : that the Committees from the west, the north. 


and from every part of the State, be severally presented in the name of the Corporation of 
the City of New York, with a medal, and a copy of the Memoir : that medals, and other 
testimonials of respect, be transmitted to citizens, and famihes of citizens, who have rendered 
pre-eminent services to the Republic : and that medals, and other testimonials of respect, be 
reserved, to be given hereafter, to such as shall merit the freedom of the City, for any signal act 
of patriotism. 



ASA MANN, f Committee of the Corporation, not detailed 

THOS. BOLTON * other Committees 














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A Meeting of the Merchants and Citizens was held in the room of the Chamber of Commerce, 
in the Tontine Coffee-house, on Wednesday, the seventh September, eighteen hundred and 
twenty-five, at twelve o'clock, when the following proceedings took place, and were published 
in the papers of the next day : — 


At a Meeting of the Merchants and Citizens of the City of New York, holden yesterday, in 
the Chamber of Commerce, at the Tontine Coffee-house, to confer on the propriety of cele- 
brating the completion of the Great Western Canal, Williaji Bayard, Esq. was called to the 
Chair, and John Pintard, Esq. appointed Secretary, when the following Resolutions, submitted 
by William W. Woolsey, Esq. were unanimously adopted : — 

Resolved, — As the sense of this Meeting, that it is proper to celebrate the completion 
of the Erie Canal, by which the waters of the great western Lakes will be united with those of 
the ocean, and benefits of immense importance be secured to this State, and especially to the 
City of New York. 

Resolved, — That a Committee, consisting of the following gentlemen, be appointed to make 
inquiry, and to give pubUc notice of the day on which the great event will occur, and when the 
Celebration should take place. And, that it be the duty of the Committee to confer with the 


Corporation on this subject, and to take such measures as may be deemed necessary, to call out 
a full expression of the public feehng, in relation to an event so important to the interests of 
the community. 

Resolved, — That the Committee consist of fifteen members. 

The following persons were then nominated and appointed : — William Bayard, John Pintard, 
Thomas R. Mercein, Wm. W Woolsey, M. M. Noah, John Rathbone, jun. Eldad Holmes, G. 
Griswokl, Joseph G. Swif^, Campbell P. White, Jonathan Goodhue, Cadwallader D. Coldea, 
Isaac Carow, Silas Richards, Lockwood Deforest. 

The Meeting was then adjourned. 

JOHN PINTARD, Secretary. 


The following communication was rcceiTed by the Common Council, on the hveli'th September, 
eighteen hundred and twenty-iive : — 


September 12, 1825. 

A communication was received from William Bayard, Cadwallader D. Colden, and John 
Pintard, stating, that at a Meeting of the Merchants and Citizens, in the Cliamber of Commerce, 
at the Tontine Coffee-house, it was resolved, as the opinion of the Meeting, that it would be 
proper to celebrate the completion of the Erie Canal, l)y which the waters of the great western 
Lakes would be united with those of the ocean, and benefits of immense importance secured to 
the State, and especially to the City of New York. It was also resolved that a Committee of 
fifteen be appointed to take measures in relation thereto. That, at a Meeting of the Com- 
mittee, on thj ninth of S.'ptembir, the Memorialists were directed to lay before the Com- 
mon Council, a copy of the proceedings of the citizens, and to request the Common Council 
to appoint a Committee, to confer with the Committee of citizens on said subject. 

The same having been rca;l, Alderman Cowdrey presented the following Resolution : — 

Resolved, — That the application from a Committee of citizens, appointed to request the 
concurrence of this Board, in measures for a public Celebration of the completion of the Great 
Western Canal, whereby a junction of our inland seas with the ocean will be effected, and the 
present and future benefit of different and remote sections of our country will be promoted, be 
referred to a select Committee, 

Whereupon, the subject was referred to the following Committee : — 

Alderman MANN, 
Alderman DAVIS, 
Assistant BOLTON, 
Assistant AGNEW. 




September 26, 1826. 

The Committee who were directed to confer with a Committee, appointed by a Meeting 
of the Merchants and Citizens, upon the subject of celebrating the arrival of the first Canal- 
boat from Lake Erie, to the waters of the Hudson, 

Respectfully report. 

That they have held such conference accordingly, and have been authorised to state to this 
Board, that it is the earnest wish of the said Committee and of our fellow-citizens, whom they 
represent, that the Corporation of the City of New York, should co-operate in the said Cele- 
bration ; and they respectfully request the Common Council to appoint a Committee with powers, 
to the end that an event, so great and so memorable as the connecting the waters of the great 
Lakes with the ocean, may be commemorated under the auspices and direction of the Corpora 
tion, and in a manner suited to the character of our City. 


Which was accepted and ordered to be filed. Alderman Cowdrey moved that a Committee 
be appointed, agreeably to the Report of the Committee, which was agreed to, and th'> folloning 
were appointed on that Committee : — Mr. Recorder, Alderman Mann, Alderman Davis, Mr. 
Bolton, and Mr. Agnew. 

J. MORTON, Clerk. 



Of the Committee of the Corporation, and of the Committee of the Mei'ch;mti and Citizens, 
appointed at the Co£Fee-honse, held at the Recorder's Office, in the City Hall, at which the 
following was unanimously passed : — 


The Conmiittee of the Corporation, and of the Jlerchants ami Citizens ol' the City of New- 
York, appointed for the purpose of considering the most proper means to celebrate, with all 
suitable magniticence, the completion of the Gnind Cim:J, met at the Recorder's Ollicc in the 
City Hall, on Tuesday, the twenty-seventh September instant, and vnaniinously adopted the 
following Resolutions : — 

Resolved, — That our fellow-citizens be, and are hereby respectfully invited to unite witli 
the Corporation in celebrating, with all suitable demonstrations of joy, the accomphshment of 
the great work, which will connect our inland seas with the Atlantic ocean. 

Resolved, — That the completion of this stupendous work, in the short space of eight years, 
is a proud monuai;^nt of the inteUigence and powers of a free people ; and whilst the citizens of 
New York hail it as an event most auspicious to its commerce, they rejoice still more, because 
it is the commencement of a vast chain, which, by connecting the interests of all the States, 
will bind our Federal Union together for ever. 

Resolved. — That the Firemen, and all the other Societies in the City of New York, the 
MichiMu s. Artists, Manufacturers, Tradesmen, Merchants, and citizens of all other professions 
b", ,m I hereby are, respectfully invited to convene meetings of their representative bodies, and 
appoint on their behalf, respectively, a Committee of two persons, to meet the Committee on (he 
part of the Corporation, and that the s;ud Conmiittee n;eet at the Session Room, in the City 
Hull, on Thursday, the sixth of October, at four o'clock, p. m. 

R. RIKER, Chairman of the Committee on the part of the Corporation. 
WM. BAYARD, Chairman of the Committee on the partof the Merchants 
and Citizens, wno lately met at the Tontine Coffee-house. 


At the City Hall, by the Committee of the Corporation, the Committee of the Merchants and 
Citizens, and the Committees from the Fire Department, and the several Societies in the 


At a Meeting, held the sixth October, 1826, at the Session Room, in the City Hall, pursuant 
to public notice given in the several newspapers printed in this City, for the purpose of uniting 
with the Corporation in celebrating the completion of the Grand Canal, the Recorder, and 
Williara Bayard, Esqs. were called to the Chair, and General Morton and T. R. Mercein were 
chosen Secretaries ; whereupon, the following Committees appeared : — 

1. On the part of the Cof.poratjon — R. Riker, Recorder ; Aldermen Mann and Davis; 
Assistants Bolton and Agnew. 

2. Fire Departjient — Samuel Jones Willis, Edward Dayton. 

3. Cordwainers' Society — Abraham Merrill, Simon Van Winkle. 

4. .Iourneymen Coopers' Society — James Seguine, David W. Akins. 

5. Students of Columbia College — John M. Guion, Hewlett R. Peters. 

6. Teachers' Society — H^illiam Forrest, E. Tompkins. 

7. Smiths' Benevolent Society — Josiah Morgan, Oliver Edson. 

8. General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen — Richard E. Mount, Stephen 

9. Gentlemen of the Bar— James Kent, Cadwallader D. Colden. 

10. Academy of Arts — Gulian C. Verplanck, J. Van Rensselaer. 

11. Horticultural Society — Dr. Hosack, Wm. P. Van Ness. 

12. Literary and Philosophical Society — Dr. Valentine Mott. Dr. Macneven, William 

13. House Painters' Society — Richard H. Staats, William Davis. 

14. Printers (not Members of the Typographical Society) — John Lang, Wra. L. Stone, 
George F. Hopldns. 


15. Bookbinders— Charles Starr, Joseph Foster. 

16. JouRNEYME.N Chairmakers — Cyrus Baldwin, John Commerford. 

17. XoRTH River Steam-boat Company — R. L. Livingston, J. Townsend. 

18. Typographical Society — A. Chandler, George Mather. 

19. Booksellers and Stationers — T. A. Ronalds, E. White. 

20. Medical Faculty of the College of Physicians and Surgeons — Dr. Samuel L. 
Mitchill, Dr. JohuW. Francis. 

21. Inspectors of Pot and Pearl Ashes — John H. Remsen, Wm. Dumont. 

22. Chairmakers' Society — George W. Skellom, J, R. Cowperthwaite. 

23. Pilots of the Port — David Mitchell, Israel Xavarro. 

24. Majors General Mapes and Fleming, on behalf of the Inf.antry, appeared by invitation 
from his Honor, the Recorder. 

The folio-wing Delegates reported their respective Societies at a subsequent period : — 

1. Journeymen Tailors' Society- — John H. Fargie, Lansing L. Bloke, 

2. Bakers Benefit Society — John Sinclair, Barnard Savage. 

3. Hatters — John Ford, Jun., Charles Harris. 

4. Tinplate Workers and Coppersmiths — Samuel Nichols, Joseph P. Simpson. 

5. Medical Society of the County of New York — Dr. Onderdonk, Dr. Stearns. 

6. Journeymen Masons — George Riley, Jefferson Berrian. 

7. Tanners, Curriers, and Leather Dressers — Benj. Brady, Wm. M'Dougall. 

8. Butchers — Walter Durbrow, John Perrin. 

9. CoMBMAKERS — Robcpt Gecincj. 

10. Saddlers and Harness Makers — Samuel Osborne, Henry Storms. 

11. Readers (Apprentices' Library) — John Stephens, Jun., J. E. Vermilye, B. Burnett. 

12. Students of Medicine — Edward P. Marcellin, Henry E. Griffith. 

13. Whitehall Watermen — George Howard. 

14. Stonecutters — Alexander Gray, Robert Smith. 

15. Potters — Clarkson Crolius, Jun. 

16. RoPEMAKERs — Thomas Day, Wm. C. B. Simms. 

17. Union Society of Shipwrights and Caulkers — Isaac Webb. John Lozier. 

18. Boat Builders— Geo. Whitfield, D. M'Cartee. 



19. Marine Society — John Whetten, President ; William Whitlock, 1st. Vice-President ; 
2nd. Vice-President, James Lovett ; J. Whetten, J. Lovett, and \Vm. M'Intire, Committee. 

20. Nautical Society — Israel G. Collins, President ; Alexander Thompson, 1st. Vice- 
President ; George Bunker, 2nd. Vice President ; Freeman Allen, Treasurer; Miles R. Burk, 
Samuel C. Reid, Samuel Ciindler, Committee of Arrangement. 

Added to the Horticultural Society — William Wilson, M. Groshon. 

The appointments of the several Committees having been read, the following Resolutions 
were proposed and adopted : — 

Resolved, — That so much of the Celebration of the completion of the Grand Canal, 
as relates to the illumination of the City Hall, and all the Aquatic demonstrations of respect be 
referred to the Committee of the Corporation. 

Resolved, — That so much as relates to the Procession of the Citizens, and of the several 
Societies, Professions, Artizans, Mechanics, Agriculturalists, Manufacturers, Merchants, and 
others, be referred to their said Committees. 

Resolved, — That so much as relates to the parade of the Military, be referred to Major- 
General Morton. 

Resolved, — That so much as relates to the demonstrations of respect, to be shewn by the 
Infantry Officers off duty, be. referred to Major-General Mapes and Major-General Fleming, 
commanding the 2nd. and 3rd. Divisions of Infantry. 

Resolved, — That a Sub-committee of five from the Committee of citizens, together with 
the Committee of the Corporation, and a Committee of five from the military, meet in the 
Session Room, in the City Hall, on Monday week, at four o'clock, to make the general arrange- 
ment for the siiid Celebration, and that they cause the same to be published in all the pubhc 
papers in this Cit}'. 

Resolved, — That the Conimittees now, or hereafter to be appointed, on the part of the 
several Societies, Trades, and Professions of this City, be requested to meet at Saint John's 
Hall, ia Frankfort-street, on Thursday evening next, at five o'clock to elect the Committee of 
five, to meet with the two other Committees of tive, mentioned in the foregoing Resolution. 


A Letter from the Honorable Stephen Van Rensselaer, President of the Board of Canal 
Commissioners, to General Morton was read, which stated, that the first boat would enter the 
Canal from Lake Erie, on the twenty-sixth instant. 

Published by order of the Meeting. 




From Mr. Bouck, to General Van Rensselaer, announcing that the Canal will be completed on 
the twenty-sixth of October, eighteen hundred and twenty-five. 

To THE Honorable Stephen Van- Rensselaer, President of the Board of Canal 

The unfinished parts of the Erie Canal will be completed, and in a condition to admit 
the passage of boats on Wednesday, the twenty-sixth day of October next. 

It would have been gratifying to have accomplished this result as early as the first of 
September, but embarrassments which I could not control, have delayed it. 

On this grand event, so auspicious to the character and wealth of the citizens of the State of 
New York, permit me to congratulate you. 

I am, 


Respectfully, your obedient humble servant, 

WM. C. BOUCK, Cand Commissioner. 
Lockport, Sept. 29, I8^!i. 




In pursuance of the arrangements of the Committee of the Common Council, and of the 
JMerchants and Citizens of New York, General Morton, at the request, and in behalf of the 
Committee of the Common Council, and Messieurs Pintard and Mercein, on the part of the 
Merchants and Citizens of New York, repaired on the twenty-eighth of September, eighteen 
hundred and twenty-five, to Albany, to determine, in conjunction with the Albany Committee, 
upon the arrangements for the contemplated Celebration, when the following arrangements 
were agreed upon : — 


The citizens of this State have, in various ways, expressed their wishes that the completion 
of the Erie Canal be celebrated with such public demonstrations of joy, as a work so beneficial 
to this State, and which is so proud a monument of our moral and physical greatness, would 
deservedly require. To give uniformity and effect to the plan which should be devised, it was 
thought that an interchange of views and opinions would be highly useful, and with this intent 
Committees have been appointed by the Corporation of the City of New York, by the Mer- 
chants and Citizens of that place, and by the inhabitants of Albany. The Committees have 
met together in the City of Albany, and have agreed upon the following arrangements, which 
(hey beg leave to recommend to the adoption of their fellow-citizens : — 

1. That the day on which the Canal will be completed, be communicated, as soon as pos- 
sible, by the Canal Commissioners, to the editors of papers, and the Committees of such towns 
ig shall have manifested an intention to celebrate the event. 


2. That cannon, of lai^e calibre, be placed under a proper superintendent, at repeating 
distances, along the whole Une of the Canal from Buffalo to Albany. 

3. That a Canal boat, suitably fitted up, and appropriately decorated lor the purpose, by 
the citizens of Buffalo and Black Rock, be in readiness to pass from Lake Erie to the Canal, 
through to Albany — and from that City (in tow of a steam-boat whirh will be provided for the 
occasion) to New York, and onward to Sandy Hook. 

4. That the entrance of the first boat from Lake Erie into the Canal, be announced by u 
discharge from the cannon on the line to the City of Albany, and be returned, in like manner.' 
from Albany to Buffalo. 

5. That the Major-General, conimandiiii; the artillery of the State, be requested to direct the 
several companies of artillery in the State, to assemble on that day (which will be designated b\ 
the Canal Commissioners,) and fire a salute in honor of the event. 

6. That to make this a Jubdee worthy of the great and important event, that the citizens of 
the several cities, towns, and villages, make such arrangements for its celebration among them- 
selves, as they may judge suitable and convenient. The Committee would especially recom- 
mend to the important villages on the route of the Canal, and to the cities and towns on the river 
Hudson, to make suitable demonstrations of respect to the occasion ; and they would recom- 
mend an interch;mge of congratulatory Committees, as in their opinion interesting and proper. 

7. That Committees of congratulation be sent from the City of New York to .Albanj', and 
be returned by the City of Albany to New York. 

8. The Committee .are of opinion that it would also be greatly in furtherance of those kind 
and affectionate feehngs that the several members of this State should entertain for each other, 
that a Committee be sent on behalf of the citizens of Albany and New York, from New York 
and Albany to Buffalo, to congratulate the inhabitants on the Canal, on the auspicious event ; and 
to express their deep conviction of the immense importance which it is to the prosperity and 
honor of the State, and of their admiration of the wisdom, patriotism, and perseverance, which 
completed the same : and that the Canal Commissioners, the Engineers, and the Committees of 
the several towns along the Canal, be invited to accompany the Canal-boats to the Cities of 
Albany and New York. 



9. That information be given to the Committee of New York, of the day when the Canal-boat 
will arrive at Albany — and that a Committee from New York attend at Albany, on that day, for 
the purpose of presenting their congratulations to the State and mimicipal authorities, and the 
Canal commissioners and engineers who will be assembled at that place, and who, with the other 
Committees, will accompany the New York Committee to the City of New York. 

10. That the Canal boat be met by the Corporation of New York, in a steam-boat, attended 
by a fleet of handsomely decorated vessels — the Corporation, with their guests, to go on board 
the Canal-boat, and the whole flotilla to proceed (the Canal-boat in advance) to Sandy Hook, 
where the waters of the Lake and the ocean will be united by the Governor of the State, and 
such other ceremonies take place as may be agreed upon. A salute to be fired at Sandy Hook 
by a detachment of artillery, and the whole then return to New York, to witness and partake of 
the civic celebration in that City. 

1 1 . The Committee would suggest, as a convenience in the arrangements, that the Chairmen 
of the several Committees should send to Mr Wm. James, of Albany, the names of the Com- 
mittees who will accompany the Canal-boat to New York. 

In behalf of the Corporation and citizens of New York, 


In behalf of the citizens of Albany, 


Mbany, Sept. 29, 1826. 





JVea- York, October 10, 1825. 

The completion of the great Erie Canal, which is to unite the waters of the Lakes with the 
Atlantic ocean, is annouced for the twenty-sixth of this month, and our fellow-citizens through- 
out the State are making arrangements for celebrating that auspicious event with unusual demon- 
strations of joy. 

This stupendous monument of public enterprise cannot but awaken, in the breast of every 
citizen, proud feehngs of the honor with which this undertaking has crowned his native State. 

When through the vista of coming years we contemplate the various advantages and blessings 
which this great improvement is to produce, we are overwhelmed with feehngs that are indis- 
cribable. While the statesman views with pride the sources of wealth which will be opened, 
and the interesting ties of common interest with which the citizens of other States of the 
Union will be connected with us, thereby enhancing our political importance ; the phihmthro- 
pist md the retired citizen will contemplate with delight the effects which this great work will 
facibtate and produce, making, what for centuries would have been the desert and the tiingled 
forest, the scenes of rural cultivation, and the abodes of domestic comfort and social refinement. 

As citizen-soldiers we must ever feel deeply what concerns our country's welfare, and it 
cannot but be extremely gratifving to the corps, in accordance with the wishes of their fellow- 
citizens, to honor, by military demonstrations of respect, an era so interesting. 


The Major-General therefore directs, that the several companies of Artillery throughout the 
State, assemble at their usual places of parade, on the twenty -sixth of the present month, and 
at twelFe o'clock of that day, fire a national salute, in honor of the event. Should there be any 
civic cele ration in the town or village where the troops are stationed, they will, of course, 
unite with their fellow-citizens in such celebration. 

General Muir, Commissary-General of Military Stores, has given orders to the store- 
keepers at the cUfferent arsenals, to supply, upon the requisition of each Commandant of a Com- 
pany of Artillery, the neccs ar. ammunition ; and they will therefore make immediate applica- 
tion to the store from v. hence they have been accustomed to be iurnished. 

As some particular duty may be required from the Brigade stationed in this City, they are 
not included in this order, but a special order will be hereafter issued to them. 

By Order of 

Major-General MORTON, 

J. VANDERBELT, Division Inspector. 

*^* The printers of the several papers in the State, will confer a favor by publishing this 
order, as it will afford an additional means of conveying the necessary information to the Corps 
of Artillery, 

Arrangements having been made by the citizens of the west, to annouce the opening of the 
Great Canal, by discharges of cannon, to be repeated along the whole line of the Canal, from 
Buffalo to Albany; and it being considered, by the Committee of Arrangements of the City of 
New York, to be highly desirable that the line of tire should be continued from Albany to the 
ocean, not only to give informrtion of the actual completion of the great work, but also as a 
mark of honor to that event. The Committee requested General Morton tfy take measures for 
performing that service. 

Accordingly Major-General Morton, accompanied by Commissary-General Muir, on the 
twenty-third October, eighteeen hundred and twenty-five, proceeded to Albany, with cannon of 


large calibre, and planted them on the shores of the Hudson, at suitable repeating distances. The 
arrangements for the firing made by these gentlemen were as follow : — 

General Morton and Commissary-General Muir, at the request of the Committee of Uie 
Common Council, have placed cunuoa along the Hudson from tliis City to Albany. ;ind directed 
the following 


At Albany, precisely at - - 

At Castleton, at - - 

At Baltimore, at - 

At Cosackie, at - - - 

At Athens and Hudson, at - 

At CatsJiill, at - - . 

At Upper Redhook, at - ■ 

At Columbus and Rhinebeck, at 

At Hyde P irk, at - - 

At Poughkeepsie, at - - 

At Hamburgh, at - 

At Newburgh, at - 

At West Point, at 

At Fort Montgomery, at 

At Stoney Point, at 

At Sing Sing and Tarrytown, at 

At opposite Philhpsburg (Closter's Landing), at 

At Fort Washington, at 

At Fort Gansevoort and North Battery, at 

At the Battery, New York, and at Governor's Island, at 

At Fort La Fayette, and at Fort Richmond, at 

And at Sandy Hook, at 


o'clock, A. 

1 1 

ninute past 1 1 

o'clock, A. 































































To commence the return fire by a national salute at Fort La Fayette, at twenty-two minutes 
past eleven o'clock, a. m. of Wednesday, and at thirty minutes past eleven o'clock, a repeating 
gun will be fired from Fort Richmond, and followed at Governor's Island, and at the Battery, 
New York, at thirty-one minutes past eleven o'clock, a. m. 

At North Battery, at 

At Fort Gansevoort, at 

At Fort Washington, at 

At Closters, opposite PhilUpsburg,at 

At Tarrytown and Sing Sing, at 

At Stoney Point, at 

At West Point, at 

At Newburgh, at 

At Hamburgh, at 

At Poughkeepsie, at 

At Hyde Park, at 

At Kingston and Rhinebeck, at 

At Red Hook, at 

At Catskill, at 

At Athens and at Hudson, at 

At Coxackie, at 

At Baltimore, at 

At Castleton, at 

At Greenbush, at 

Again at Albany, at 

32 minutes past 1 1 o'clock, a. m. 


























































J. MORTON, Maior-General of Artillery. 
A. M. MUIR, Commissary-General of the State of New York. 

OdoLcr 24</i, 1825. 


The result proved the calculation correct. The report of the cannon from the north and 
west, was received on the twenty-sixth instant, at New York, in one hour and forty minutes, 
and was returned to Buffalo, in nearly the same space of time, making a communication, on » 
line of eleven hundred miles, in less than three hours. 



For firing a Grand S:Jute on the first boat entering the Cnm\ from Lake Erie; and also 
arrangements for giving the anticipated times when she will reach the diflferent places, on 
her route to Albany. 


(From the Cammcrcial Advertiser of Oct. 18.) 

The preparations for tlie approaching grand Celebration, are continded, with great activity, 
from this City, along the line of the Canal, to Buffalo. The mail of this morning has furnished 
us with the Buffalo Journal extra, containing the following proceedings, which we hasten to lay 
before our readers. The time of the arrival of the boats at Albany having been thus accurately 
fixed, the arrangements for this City can now be completed with certainty. 

The Committee of Arrangements on the part of the Corporation, Merchants, Military, and 
Societies of this City, met at the Recorder's apartment, in the City Hall, last evening, and com- 
pleted the arrangements for the aquatic pirt of the Celebration. In regard to the land Cele- 
bration, some progress was made, and the whole will be completed at an adjourned meeting, to 
be held on Thursday. Major-Generai Fleming was appointed Grand Marshal of the day, with 
the power of selecting such number of iiids as he may require. 


The following are the detailed and final arrangements made by the Committees of this village, 
Lockport, and Rochester, relative to the departure and stops of the first boat upon the Canal 
destined for New York. This, it will be seen, does not correspond with the arrangements pub- 
lished in our last ; and we give the alterations made by the Committee, in the present form, thus 
early, to prevent the possibility of mistake. 



The untlersigaed, as Committees of Conference from the villages of Bufl'alo, Lockport, and 
Rochester, to arrange the times of the arrival of the first boat, leaving Lake Erie on Uie 
twenty-sixth instant, for Albany and New York, at the most important villages upon the Caual, 
do make the following Report, viz. : — 

Leave Buffalo, on Wednesday, the 2Gth instant, 

Arrive at Black Rock. do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Lockport, do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Newport, on Thursday, the 27th, 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Holly, do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Brockport, do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Rochester, do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Palmyra, on Friday, the 28th, 

Leave do. 
Arrive at Newark, 
Leave do. 
Arrive at Lyons, 
Leave do. 
Arrive at Clyde, 
Leiive do. 
Arrive at Montezuma, 
Leave do. 


Arrive at Buoksville, on Friday, the 29th, 
Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Weedsport, do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Jordan, do. - 

Leave do. do. 



10 ( 

)'clock, A. 




at half- past 



at h;df-past 


p. M. 






A. M. 

at half-past 






at half-past 






at half-past 



at half-past 


P. M. 




at ludf-past 


A. M. 







at half-past 



at half-past 


p. M. 







at half-past 



at half-past 






at half-past 



















Arrive at Syracuse, on Fritlay, the 29th instant, 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Rome, on Sunday, the 30th, 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Whitesborough, do. - 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Utica, do. - 

Leave do. on Monday, the 31st, 

Arrive at Little Falls, do. 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Schenectady, on Tuesday, November 1st 

Leave do. do. 

Arrive at Albany, on Wednesday, November 2nd, 

at 3 

p. M. 

at 6 


at 8 

p. M. 

at half-past 8 


at 12 


at half-past 12 

P. M 

at half-past 1 

and attend Church. 

at 9 

A. M. 

at 4 

P. M. 

at 6 


at 6 


at 7 


at 1 


In behalf of the citizens of Buffalo, 

In behalf of the citizens of Lockport, 

In behalf of the citizens of IJochester, 




*^* The Grand Salute will commence at ten o'clock, a. m. precisely. 

idT" The above has been carefully copied from the manuscript report of the Committee. 
It would be well for those interesteil to compare other copies of this Report with the above, 
should any appear, in order to be certain of their correctness. 

Bnjfalo, October lhl82S. 

There seemed to be some difficulty in regard to the continuation of the Grand Salute from 
Albany to this Cily, in conseq^uence of the want of field pieces. During the late war, the guns 


belonging to most of the artillery companies between this City and Albany, were ordered to be 
talien to the frontiers by the then Commander-in-Chief, and they have never been returned. 
The Committee, however, resolved last evening to make the effort, and voted an appropriation 
for that purpose. But it will be seen by the following letter, addressed to us by the Editor of 
the Rochester Telegraph, that the difficulty no longer exists. The patriotic Committee of that 
vilhige have taken the matter up efficiently, and the guns are now on the way. Our Committee 
will thus be relieved of much trouble, while the object is certain of being accomplished. Our 
Committee will, of course, pay a liberal proportion of the expences ; and we would beg leave 
respectfully to suggest, whether it would not be proper to send a Sub-Committee immediately to 
Albany, to superintend the planting of the cannon along the margin of the river. 

To THE Editors of the Commercial Advertiser. 

Having understood that the project of planting cannon upon the Erie Canal, 
had failed in consequence of Mr. Meech's inability to obtain them, our Committee have ven- 
tured to anticipate the wishes of the citizens of New York and Albany, by employing Messrs. 
Viin Slyck, Mathews, Meech, and Ely, of this village, to plant cannon upon the whole route, in 
accordance with the views of the New York and Albany Committees. Mr. Mathews goes 
east, and Mr. Meech west, to-night, to place the cannon. Two boats have been already des- 
patched with 32 pounders, and two more leave to-morrow. 

The gentlemen who have now undertaken this business have the cannon in their possession, 
and will carry the arrangements into full effect. 

We should not have presumed to act in this matter, but for the apprehension that a few days 
delay would probably defeat the whole arrrangements. 

We shall send a fine boat, and a Committee of Congratulation to New YorL 

Yours, kc. 

Rochester, October 12, 1825. 



(^From the Rochester Telegraph, of October 18.) 

The wecWiog of the waters of Lake Erie, with those of the Hudson, is to be solemniseJ on 
the twenty-sixth instant, and we are happy to observe that marriage feasts are making ready 
in every part of the State. It will be seen, by another column, that a banquet will be pre- 
pared in our own villtige, and that servants have gone forth to invite many guests. 

As the conclusion of this gigantic work draws near, the enthusiasm of the public spreads far 
and ivido. Loud and deep will be the shouts of triumph which rend the air when the signal 
gim announces the work is completed ! 

The rapidity with whicli this immense work has progressed, is a matter of profound astonish- 
ment. The opinion* of learned men, the estimates of experience, the computations of science, 
and even the visions of fancy, have all been disappointed in the time required to accomphsh 
the great work of the age. 

In eighteen humlred and eight, a resolution was first submitted to the Legislature, by Joshua 
Forman, Esq., of Onondaga, on the subject of the Erie Canal. Mr. JamesGeddes surveyed the 
whole route in eighteen hundred and nine. In eighteen hundred and ten, the first commissioners 
were appointed, and in eighteen hundred and eleven, they submitted a favorable Report to the 
Legislature. The Legislature of eighteen hundred and twelve appropriated a sum not exceed- 
ing fifteen thousand dollars, to commence the work of internal improvements ! During this year 
unsuccessful apphcations were made to the General Government, and the several western State? 


and Territories for assistance. In the mean time the public opinion was dirided, both as to the 
pr,<cticabiht^ and the expediency of the project. A great proportion of the people thought it 
an extravagant, if not an idle project, and all concurred in the opinion that if ever completed, it 
must be by the posterity of the generation which commenced it. It was uniformly spoken of, 
by the learned and the ignorant, ;« the work of fifty or an hundred years. So strong and settled 
was the conviction that this work could not be accomplished within the brief space allotted for 
life, that almost every person vvouhl have said, 1 desire to live no longer than to see this Canal 

In eighteen hundred and seventeen, commissioners were appointed to commence the work, 
and the ground was first broke at Rome, on the fourth day of July, of that year. As late as the 
Session of eighteen hundred and nineteen, and after many thousand dollars had been expended, a 
strong effort was made to arrest the work, and a l.irge minority of the House of Assembly 
actually voted against making any further appropri:itions ! When the engineers were surveying 
the route, and told the farmers, upon whose lands th-y were sticking their stakes, that, in a few 
years, boats would pass their doors, they citlier laughed at what they conceived a hoax, or 
stood amazed at the splendour of the project. 

But all fears were soon dissipated — every obstacle 3'iclded to the strong arm of enterprise ; 
the lofty forest — the dense swamp — the rugged hills — ;uid the solid roclcs, all gave way to the 
muscular and untiring power of industry. The Work is finished ! Our brightest, highest hopes, 
are all consummated. Let the shouts of triumph be heard from Erie to the Atlantic, jmd from 
the Atlantic resound back to Erie. Let the air itself be made vocal with our paeans of exultation 
and gratitude. 




{From the Commercial Advertiser, of Wednesday, October 26, 1825.) 


At twenty minutes past eleven o'clock this morning, the joyful intelligence was proclaimed to 
our citizens, by the roar of artillery , that the great, the gigiintic work, of uniting the upper 
Lakes with the ocean, was completed, and that exactly an hour and twenty minutes before, the 
first boat from Erie had entered the C;mal, and commenced its voyage to New York. This 
proud intelligence having been communicated in the same manner to Sandy Hook, and notice of 
its reception returned to the City, the return salute was commenced at Fort La Fayette, by a 
national salute, at twenty-two minutes past eleven, and the sounds of our rejoicing sent roaring 
and echoing along the mountains, and amoag the Highlands, back to Buffalo, where it was doubt- 
less received long before this paper went to press. 

The salute having been received at Albany, without a moment's delay was continued along the 
banks of the Hudson in the following order : — 

At Albany, precisely at 

At Castleton, at 

At Baltimore, at 

At Coxackie, at 

At Athens and Hudson, at 

At Catskill, at 

At Upper Redhook, at 



1 minute 




2 do. 


3 do. 


4 do. 


5 do. 


6 do. 













































At Columbus and Rhinebeck, at - , 7 minutes past 1 1 o'clock, a. m. 

At Hyde Park, at - - 

At Poughkeepsie, at - - 

At Hamburgh, at 

At Newburgh, at - 

At West Point, at 

At Fort Montgomery, at - 

At Stoney Point, at - 

At Sing Sing and Tarrytown, at 

At opposite Phillipsburg (Closter's Landing), at 

At Fort Washington, at - - 

At Fort Gansevoort and North Battery, at 

At the Battery, New York, and at Governor's Island, at 

At Fort La Fayette, and at Fort Richmond, at 

And at Sandy Hook, at - 

After the national salute from Fort La Fayette, at thirty minutes past eleven o'clock, a 
repeating gun was fired from Fort Richmond, and followed at Governor's Island, and at the 
Battery, New York, at thirty-one minutes past eleven o'clock, a. m., and the firing was then 
continued up the river, as follows : — 

At North Battery, at - - 32 minutes past 1 1 o'clock, a. m. 

At Fort Gansevoort, at - - - 

At Fort Washington, at 

At Closters, opposite Phillipsburg, at 

At Tarrytown and Sing Sing, at 

At Stoney Point, at 

At West Point, at - - ■ 

At Newburgh, at - - 

At Hamburgh, at - - 

At Poughkeepsie, at 

At Hyde Park, at 

At Kingston and Rhinebeck, at 

At Red Hook, at 





































At Catskill, at - • - 45 minutes past 11 o'clock, a. m. 

At Athens and at Hudson, at - - 46 do. do. 

At Cosackie, at - - - 47 do. do. 

At Baltimore, at - - - 48 do. do. 

At Castleton, at - - - 49 do. do. 

At Greenbush, at - - 4ni do. do. 

Again at Albany, at - - 60 do. do. 

Thus, in the short space of eight 3'ears, has a mighty work been accomplished by New 

York, unaided and ;)lnne, which will fiir ages stand high in r;mk among the wonders of the world. 



The Committee of the Corporation of the City of New York, assisted by the Sub-committees, 
representing the Merchants and Citizens — the several Mechanic Societies — the Military — the 
Fire Department — the Literary and Scientific Institutions — the Members of the Bar, and other 
Associations, have agreed unanimously to commemorate the Great State Work, which unites the 
waters of the northern and western Lakes with the Atlantic ocean, in the following manner : — 

1. The Grand Salute, which is to begin at Buffalo, on Lake Erie, precisely at ten o'clock 
A. M. on the twenty-sixth of October, when the first boat enters the Canal from the Lake, will be 
continued, in rapid succession, from Buffalo to the City of New York, and so down to Sandy 
Hook, and forthwith returned by cannon, of the largest calibre, from Sandy Hook through the 
City of New York to Lake Erie — making, in distance, a grand total of one thousand and eighty- 
eight miles. 

2. A National Salute will also be tired from the Battery, the moment that the line of cannon 
shall have announced that the boat has left the Lake, and safely entered the Canal. One hour 
and twenty minutes is allowed for the information to reach New York, and the like time to 
acknowledge at Buffalo that we have received it. 


152 Al'ft:NUlX. 

3. Alderman Davis and Alderman King, in behalf of the Corporation of the City of New 
York, have repaired to the seat of the Government of this State, and will from thence proceed 
to Lake Erie, and communicate to our fellow citizens, through their Committees, the mea- 
sures that nill be adopted on this great occasion by the City of New York, and the high satisfac- 
tion that the Corporation will receive by meeting our fellow citizens of the north and of the 
west, and along the whole line, and from every part of our State, in the waters of the City of 
New York. 

4. On the day that the Canal boat enters the waters of the Hudson River, she will be met 
by a steam boat, despatched from this City by the Corporation, which shall render to the Canal 
boat, her consort boats and canoes, with the aborigines from Lake Erie, every facility in pass- 
ing down the Hudson River, to our City. 

5. Upon her arrival within the waters of the City of New York, a Committee of the Cor- 
poration, in a steam boat, bearing the large flag of the City, will meet her, and tender to her 
and to her passengers, the hospitalities of the City. 

6. It is expected she will reach o>ir City by day break of Friday, tlie fourth of November. 
The precise day will be announced, so as to notify the whole City. Arrangements will h<ive 
been so made, that she will pass the North Battery precisely at seven o'clock, a. m. of the 
morning of her arrival. She will then receive a national salute. 

She will then proceed slowly down the river, attended by steam boats, pilot boats, and barges, 
all splendidly decorated. Upon passing the Battery, to proceed up the East River, she will 
again receive a national salute. Pursuing her course along the east side of the City, she will 
pass the ship yards, Corlaer's Hook, the upper ship yards, and dry dock, stopping at the navy 
yard, where she will again receive a national salute. A frigate will there be dressed for the 
occasion. At the navy yard, the Officers of the United States Navy, who are the invited guests 
of the Corporation, will join the Canal boat, and proceed to the Bittery. The whole flotilla 
will reach the Battery precisely at mne o'clock, a.m. where they will be met by the Mayor, the 
Corporation, and their guests. 

While the Canal boat, attended by the steam-boats, the pilot boats, and the barges, are pass- 
ing the City, through both rivers, the Corporation, with their guests, will dissemble at the City 


Hall, for the purpose of joining in the Grand Aquatic Display ; and the merchants, the citizens, 
the military oflicers off duty, and all the Societies, will prepare for the Grand Procession through 
the City. 


1. Charles Rhind, Esquire, assisted by the Committees of the Marine and Nautical Societies, 
the sea captains and captains of steam boats, the harbour masters and wardens of the port, and 
the Committee of the pilots and bargemen, will station the whole line of boats, and direct the 
order in which they shall move. All boats which unite in the procession, and carry passengers, 
will conform to the regulations prescribed by Mr. Rhind, assisted by the Nautical Committees. 

2. To enable Mr. Rhind, assisted as aforesaid, to conduct the whole line of boats to the 
ocean, and return them to the Battery by three o'clock, p. m. so that the whole aquatic party 
may unite in the Procession of the citizens and societies, the Corporation will assemble in the 
City Hall, at eight o'clock, a. m. where their guests will meet them punctually, and proceed on 
board the boats at the Battery, precisely at nine o'clock, a. m. By this hour it is respectfully 
requested that all the ships ;md vessels in the harbour be suitably decorated. 

3. The whole Aquatic Procession will leave the Battery for the ocean precisely at nine 
o'clock, A. M. A national salute will then be tired from (he Battery. They will pass Castle 
Williams, when another national salute will be fired. As the Procession piisses Fort La Fayette 
towards the ocean, it will again receive a national salute, which will be repeated ;is the Proces- 
sion returns to the City. 

As the flotilla approaches the ocean, it is expected that a deputation from Neptune will be 
sent to know who the visitors are, and the object of their coming. Upon being informed, it is 
anticipated that a sldlful pilot will be sent to conduct it to his dominions. 

When the fleet is met by the monarch of the deep, his Excellency, the Governor, will unite 
the waters of the Lakes with the ocean. 

Dr. Mitchill having obtained the pure waters of the Elbe, the sacred waters of the Ganges, 
the overflowings of the Nile, the waters of the Amazon, the Oronoco,the La Plata, of Columbia 


River, of the Thames, the Seine, the Neva, the Tagu?, and from every quarter of the Globe, 
will unite these waters with the ocean, as tm emblem of our conmierciiU intercourse with all 
parts of the world. 

The Honorable C. D. Colden will present to his Honor, the Mayor, at the request of the 
Committee of the Corporation, a written Memoir upon the importance of the subject. This 
Memoir will be deposited in the City Archives. 

After this, the whole fleet, disposed in due order, will then return from the ocean to the 
Battery, and anchor in line, precis(>ly at three o'clock, p. m. There they will receive another 
national salute. 

4. The Lne of boats being formed close to the Battery, the Societies will pass them upon 
the broad paved circular walk, along the margin of the water, and receive from the Corporation 
those demonstrations of respect which are so eminently due to so great, industrious, and patriotic 
an assemblage of our fellow citizens. 


1. The procession will be formed (six in front) under the direction of Major General 
Fleming, who will act as the Grand Marshal of the day. It will form on the west side of 
Greenwich Street — its right on Marketfield-street. The line of procession will begin to form 
at nine o'clock, a. m. and be ready to move at eleven o'clock, a. m. 

2. Its right will wheel and pass, the whole line moving at the same time, so that all may see 
each other. 

3. The procession will pass up Greenwich Street to Canal Street and to Broadway — up 
Broadway to Broom Street and to the Bowery, down the Bowery to Pearl Street, down Pearl 
Street to the Battery. The procession will reach the Battery by three o'clock, p. m. when the 
whole Aquatic Procession will have returned from the ocean, and be stationed off the Battery. 


4. Thp whole aquatic party being ready and the boats duly arranged, the procession will 
pass th.' bi) ,ts at the margin of the Battery, upon the broad paved circular walk. This close 
appro.ich of ihu boats to the Battery is intended to give to the City Procession, and the Aquatic 
Pcirty, a view of each other, and to enable the Corporation to unite the two together in the 
Grind Procession. 

6. The Corporation, with their guests, preceded by the aborogines from Lake Erie, with their 
canoes, will I'dl in the reiu- of the City Procession, following it under the direction of the Grand 
Marshal, to the City Hall, where all will disperse. 

Note. — It is requested that the Committees, of the several Societies who intend to unite in 
the celebration, will send to the Rccorders's OiBce, in the City Hall, on or before the first of 
November, an estimate of their respective numbers, to the end that the Grand Marshal may 
apportion a sufficient space, in which each Society may conveniently form and move in the Pro- 
cession. And, also, the names of the principal persons from each society, with whom the Grand 
Marsh;d may confer. 

The bells of the City Hall, and of :ill the churches in the City will be rung from seven ta 
eight, from twelve to one, iind from four to five o'clock. 


1. Horsemen, with trumpets. 

2. A Band of Music. 

3. The Grand Marshal with his Aids. 

4. Foresters with axes to cut down the trees, and clear the earth for cultivation. 

5. Tillers of the ground, consisting of Farmers and Gardeners, and followed by the Mem- 
bers of the Agricultural and Horticultural Societies. 

6. The Tailors, and Journeyman Tailors' Society. 

7. Measurers of grain — Millers and Inspectors of flour— of pot and pearl ashes, and of 

8. The Bakers, and the Bakers' Benefit Society. 

9. Brewers and Distillers. 



10. Coopers, and the Journeymen Coopers' Society. 

11. The Butchers. 

12. Weavers and Manufacturers of linen, woollen, and cotton cloths. 

13. Tallow Chandlers and Soap Makers. 

14. Tanners, Curriers, and Leather Dressers. 

15. Cordwainers Society. 

16. The Furriers. 

17. The Hatters. 

18. The Masons, and the Journeymen Masons. 

19. The Carpenters. 

20. Smiths, Nailors and Cutlers, and Smiths' Benevolent Society. 

21. Painters and Glaziers, and House Painters' Society. 

22. Stone Cutters. 

23. Cabinet Makers. 

24. Chair Makers, Chair Maimers' Society, and Journeymen Chair Makers' Society. 

25. Upholsterers. 

26. Tinplate Workers and Pewterers. 

27. Potters. 

28. Brush Makers. 

29. Copper, Gold, and Silver Smiths. 

30. Carvers ;md Gilders. 

31. Coach Makers, Sadlers, and Harness Makers. 

32. Shipwrights. 

33. Sail Makers, Rope Makers, Riggers and Caulkers. 

34. General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen. 

35. The Firemen and Fire Department. 

36. The Benevolent Societies. 

37. The Merchants 

38. The Citizens. 

39. The Cartmen. 

40. The Teachers' Society. 

41. The Printers and Members of the Typographical Society. 

42. The Booksellers, Bookbinders, and Stationers. 

43. The Students of Columbia College. 


44. The College of Physicians and Surgeons. 

45. The Medical Society. 

46. The Reverend the Clergy. 

47. The Bar. 

48. The Historical, Philosophical, Philological, and other Literary Societief. 

49. The Members of the Academy of the Fine Arts. 

50. Strangers of Distinction. 

51. The Sheriff and Staff, with the Judicial Officers. 
62. The Military Officers. 

53. The Ancient and Honorable Society of Free and Accepted Masons. 

54. The Governor and Lientenant-Governor. 

55. The Senate and Members of the Assembly, 

56. Canal Commissioners now in commission, and all former Canal Commissioners. 

57. Can;J Engineers. 

58. State Officers. 

59. The Corporation and their Guests. 


1. The City Hall will be brilliantly illuminated by special order of the Corporation. It 
ivill be superbly decorated with appropriate devices. The illumination will commence at seven 
o'clock, and close at 10 o'clock. 

2. Towards the close of the illumination, there will be a grand display of fire works in 
front of the Hall. Some of the designs will be entirely novel. This will be done under the 
direction of Mr. Richard Wilcox. 

3. The Corporation respectfully recommend that the Theatres and public buildings be illu- 
minated from seven to ten o'clock. 


The President of the United States. 


Senators and Membprs of Congress. 

The Heads of the Departments of the United States. 

Judicial and other Civil Officers of the United States. 

Foreign Ministers and Consuls. 

Oflicers of the Army and Navy of the United States. 

Foreign Military and Naval Officers. 

The Collector of the Port of New York. 

Navy Officer. 


Marshal of the District. 

Clerk of the District. 


The Captain of the Revenue Cutter. 

The Governors of the several States. 

The Governor of the State. 


Senate and Assembly. 

Chancellor and Judges of the Supreme Court. 

Judges of the Circuits. 

First Judge of the City and County. 

The Reverend the Clergy. 

President and Professors of Columbia College. 

Professors of the College of Physicians and Surgeons. 

President and Officers of the Medical Society. 

President and Officers of the Chamber of Commerce. 

President and Officers of the Marine and Nautical Societies. 

President and Officers of the House of Refuge. 

The Governors of the Hospital. 

Trustees of the Sailors Snug Harbor. 

The Canal Commissioners now in commission and all former Canal Commissioners. 

Canal Engineers. 

Superintendent and Commissioner of the Salt Works. 

The Commissioners of the Senate and Assembly on Canals. 

Commissioners of the Canal Fund. 


The Committees from Buffalo to New York, connected with the Celebration. 

The Chairman and Committee of every Society or Body, in this City, connected with the 

The Committees of the Merchants, of the Bar, and of the Students of Columbia College. 

Wardens and Harbour Masters. 

Masters of Vessels. 

The Health Officers and Health Commissioners. 

Commissioners of the Alms House, and Physicians and Surgeons thereof. 

Sheriff and Under Sheriff. 

The Register and Assistant Register of the Court of Chancery. 

The Clerks of the Supreme Court and other Courts, Register and Surrogate, Marine 
Justices and Police Magistrates, Street Commissioner and Assistant, Comptroller of tlie City. 

City Inspector. 

The Attorney-General and District Attornies, President and Directors of the North River 
Steam-boat Company. 

The Captains and Agents of the steam-boats who have tendered their services to the Cor- 

The Committees of the Pilots, Officers and Professors of West Point Academy. 

The President, Vice-President, and Trustees of the Fire Department. 

The Honorable the Trustees of the village of Brooklyn. 

The Honorable the Corporation of Jersey City. 

The Secretary of the State, the Treasurer, the Comptroller, the Surveyor-General, the 

The Regents of the University, Trustees of Columbia College, Strangers of distinction. 

The Officers of the Grand Lodge of (he State of New York. 

Cincinnati Society. 

The Honorable John Jay, Morgan Lewis, and Joseph C. Yates, former Governors of the 
State of New York. 

The Hon. Stephen Van Rensselaer, John Ta3'ler, and Erastus Root, former Lieutenant- 
Governors of the State of New York. 

The Hon. Egbert Benson and Robert Troup, former Judges under the United States. 
The Hon. John Lansing and James Kent, former Chancellors of the State of New York. 
The Hon. Ambrose Spencer and Jonas Piatt, former Judges of the Supreme Court 



TThe former. Chief Magistrates of the City of New York— Col. Varick, Col. Willet, John 
Ferguson, Jacob RadcliflF, C. D. Coklen, and Stephen Allen, Esquires. 

The former Recorders of the City of New York — John Watts, Richard Harrison, Maturin 
Livingston, Pierre C. Van Wyck, Josiah Ogden Hoffman, and Peter A. Jay, Esquires. 

The late Members of the Corporation. 

To commemorate this great event in an appropriate and durable manner, the Corporation 
have ordered Medals to be prepared, one of which will be given to each of the invited guests. 

Gentlemen who are thus publicly invited, will be pleased to signify their acceptance of the 
invitation, by sending their names and address to the Recorder's Office, in the City Hall. PubUc 
characters and citizens, who have rendered great services to the Republic, though not named in 
the general invitation, will receive a special invitation and a Med;il. 

R. RIKER, on the part of the Corporation. 

WM. BAYARD, on the part of the Merchants and Citizens. 

J. MORTON, Maj.-Gen. Div. Artillery. 

J. MAPES, Maj.-Gen. 2nd. Div. Infantry. 

R. E. MOUNT, for the Societies. 

SAML. J. WILLIS, on the part of the Fire Department. 

CHAS. RHIND, in behalf of the Aquatic Committee. 

AUGUSTUS FLEMING, Grand Marshal of the Day. 


The follou-ing xi-as puUiihed by the Recorder, fur the direction of the Guests of the 


1. The Corporation have engaged for themselves and their guests, the steam-boat Wasliingtou, 
the steam-boat Fulton, and the barge Lady Clinton. These boats will be exclusively under the 
control of a Committee of the Corporation. 

2. The boats, with the barge, will be at No. 1, on the east side of the Battery, precisely at 
eight o'clock, a. m. on Friday, the fourth of November. 

3. The ladies who are invited, with the gentlemen who attend them, need not come to the 
Hall, but will proceed directly to the steam-boat Fulton, or to the barge Lady Clinton. They 
must be there from eight to half-past eight o'clock, a. m. where they will-be received by a Com- 
mittee of the Corporation. 

4. Ladies and gentlemen will be required to produce their tickets — this rule cannot be 
departed from. 

5. The Mayor and Corporation will be at the City Hall to receive the Public Functionaries, 
the Reverend the Clergy, and all their other guests, who do not take ladies, and proceed from 
the City Hall, at half-past eight o'clock, so as to reach the Battery one qu;u-ter of an hour before 
nine o'clock, a. m. 

6. The days being short, the utmost punctuality is indispensible. 

R. HIKER, Chairman of the Committee of the Corporation. 



The Sub-committee appointed to proceed to Buffalo, for the purpose of tendering and receiving 
congratulations in behalf of the Common Council of the City of New York, on the completion 
of the Grand Erie Canal, and to inyite a Committee from each of the Towns and Villages on 
the route to unite with the citizens of New York in celebrating that happy event, 

That, on the nineteenth of October last, they proceeded on their mission to Buffalo, and 
travelled princij)ally by land, in order to obtain a more perfect view of the western section of 
this great and flourishing State ; and their minds were filled with mingled emotions of pride 
and gratitude at beholding the fertility of its soil — the grandeur of its scenery, — the enterprise 
of its inhabitants, and their progressive improvement in all the arts and sciences that can exalt 
our natures, or contribute to the comforts and elegancies of life, which so far surpassed the 
many glowing descriptions of that enchanting region, that any representation that may be 
attempted of it, must fall far short of the reality. The enraptured eye of the traveller turns 
with delight from one scene of natural beauty to another, in a constant succession of endless 
variety. At one moment it glances over a wide range of cultivated farms, with their neat dwel- 
lings and spacious out-buildings, at once indicating the comfort and wealth of the proprietors ; 


at another, it views a majestic river, pursuing its course through fertile valleys, and bearing on 
its bosom the sails of commerce and the products of industry : here are seen herds of cattle, 
spread over extensive fields of grain, grazing on their delicate blades, to check their excessive 
luxuriancy, whilst others fed on the distant mountain side, or in the rich meadows below. A 
recent frost had tinged the foliage of the forests with the variegated colours of autumn, well cal- 
culated to produce emotions " painful, yet pleasing to the soul." From a scene so delightful 
the attention of tlie traveller is suddenly arrested by the sight of a City, sprung up as if by 
magic, on a spot where late a desert frowned, and the wild beasts roamed unmolested, save by 
the chance arrow of the savage huntsman ; here regular streets are lined by substantial brick or 
wooden buildings, many of which are magnificent in extent, and adorned with all the chaste 
elegance of Grecian architecture. Nor had the inhabitants confined themselves to the con- 
struction of private dwellings alone ; but justly considering in what true wealth and happiness 
consist, have erected, in each town and village, some elegant and spacious edifice devoted to 
learning, and not unfrequently two or three beautiful churches pointing their lofty spires to the 

Through such a country your Committee were reluctantly urged on to Bufialo, in four 
days. On their arrival they were received by a Committee of the village, consisting of Judge 
Wilkeson, Captain Joy, Major Burt, Captain Dox, Doctor Stagg, and Messieurs Potter and 
Wells, and were greeted with a cordial welcome by the intelligent and grateful inhabitants of 
Buffalo. Here your Committee procured two barrels of the pure waters of Lake Erie, to be 
commingled with those of the ocean, and two logs of native red-cedar and one of birds-eye 
maple, were put on board the Canal-boat for the purpose of being made into boxes to enclose 
medals for the different guests. 

in the course of the day the Governor and Lieutenant-Governor arrived, and were received 
witli due honor by the inhabitants. 

The dawn of the twenty-sixth was ushered in by a reveille from a band beneath our win- 
dows ; and soon after the military were formed, whose appearance and discipline, it is believed, 
are not excelled by any in the State. At ten o'clock they escorted the Governor, Lieutenant- 
Governor, and other guests, on board the Canal boat, " Seneca Chief," destined for New York : 
then those cannon, which so lately sounded our country's glory on the Northern Lakes, pro- 
claimed the accomplishment of a work which, under the circumstances which attended its' 


commencement Tincl progression, stands unrivalled in the annals of the world: at this signal we 
started in the first boat, amid the cheers of an assembled multitude, to traverse a new path froni 
the Lakes to the ocean, and in every countenance was depicted a deep felt gratitude to Heaven, 
for having opened to them a source of wealth and prosperity, the extent of which cannot yet hr 
conceived by the mind of man. 

On reaching Black Rock, intelligence was received that General Porter, with his party, had 
started the preceding evening, in an elegant boat, richly laden with the products of the west, 
intending to join the party at .\lbany, and thence to proceed to New York. 

Passing on we stopped at Lockport, and the various towns and villages on the line of the 
Canal, at the precise hours previously appointed, and of which all were fully apprized. Those 
towns and villages vied with each other to honor the Chief Magistrate, to whom, and other 
enlightened statesmen, under the auspices of a divine Providence, they felt indebted for the great 
blessings resulting from the union of the ocean, with the great western waters, in anticipation of 
which they already had enjoyed a pleasing foretaste. It is needless to add that your Committee, 
as the representatives of the City of New York, received their full share of all the honors and 
festivities prepared for the occasion, nor did your Committee fail to impress on the minds of 
their western brethren, the generous sentiments which the citizens of New York entertained 
towards them ; and to assure them that the Corporation of New York, in common with their 
fellow-citizens, deemed the completion of the Erie Canal an event calculated to exalt the 
character of the State, and to promote its best interests, not only as it affords the means of 
extending its commerce, but that it will bring together the citizens from the remotest comers of 
the State, and thus enable them to cultivate that friendship and mutual good feeling which the 
citizens of New York are so desirous of promoting, and which is so necessary lor cementing 
our Union. In behalf of the Common Council your Committee invited the citizens of each city 
and village through which they passed, to appoint a Delegation to join them in celebrating the 
happy event, assuring them that on their arrival at our shores, they would find a people with 
open arms and open hearts to receive them. 

It was peculiarly gratifying to your Committee to find that those sentiments were invariably 
received with the utmost cordiality, and as heartily reciprocated. To give even an outline of 
the splendid entertainments at the different cities and villages at which the boat stopped by 
appointment, would be impracticable, as they occurred in such rapid succession, that it precluded 

CAjen the possibility of taking note. At each place, however, some distinguished individual con- 
gratulated the party in behalf of his fellow-citizens, which was reciprocated, in an appropriate 
manner, by his Excellency, the Governor. The approach of the party was announced at every 
stopping place by the discharge of cannon, and the military attended to escort them to some 
hotel, at a short distance from the landing, where tables spread with sumptuous viands and choice 
wines were prepared for their refreshment, and numbers of citizens united to render these 
entertainments agreeable. In the night time were super-added illuminations, rockets, displays 
of fire-works, and transparencies, descriptive of the happy occasion they were intended to 
celebrate, and also to pay a deserved compliment to the distinguished individual who had con- 
tributed so much towards its completion. 

Your Committee would fain give a brief description of the hospit;ilities received by the 
party at Rochester, Utica, and several other places, but this would be doing injustice to other 
villages, whose exertions were not less honorable to themselves, nor less acceptable to the party. 
At Rochester, after partaliing of a splendid entertainment, the party received a most valuable 
accession ; an elegant boat had been built for the purpose called the " Young Lion of the West," 
freighted with the native products of their soil, and many valuable articles manufactured by their 
artists, with several rare animals from the forests. In company with this boat, having on board 
a Committee of the most distinguished gentlemen of that vilhige, your Committee proceeded on 
their route. 

Although the hurry of the jaunt admitted of httle rest, yet the constant succession of new 
scenes, added to the unabated exertions of each gentleman of the party, to contribute his share 
towards increasing the happiness of all, was more than an equivalent for its loss. 

But amid this boundkss scene of pleasure, one unhappy accident occurred, at Weedport, 
which it becomes the painful duty of your Committee to notice. The patriotic citizens of this 
place had made every preparation for suitable rejoicings, and amongst the rest cannon had been 
planted on the margin of the Canal, and two sober and discreet mfichanics selected to manage 
them ; on the approach of the boats guns were fired, and whilst the Governor and party were 
seated round the festive board, the sad intelligence was anaounced that the two gunners were 
blown to atoms in their attempt to re-charge a gun. This accident tended not a little to mar our 
future pleasures, and is here stated in the hope that it will call forth not the mere sympathies, 
but something more substantial, from a humane and generous community, for the benefit of their 
surviving widows and children. 


On arriving at Albany, on the second of November, we were joined by a Committee of our 
brethren, Alderman Wyckjff ^nd Mr. Hone ; and here great exertions were made to do honor 
to the occasion. A handsome procession was formed, and m.irched to the Capitol, where an 
ode was sung ; and an eloquent petition made to the throne of grace by the Reverend Mr. 
Lacey, after which our worthy colleague, Mr. Hone, in behalf of the corporation and citizena 
of New York, delivered an elegant congratulatory address, followed by Mr James, Chairman 
of the Alb;my Delegation, and the Lieutenant-Governor, in his peculiar happy manner, recipro- 
cated their congratulations on behalf of the western Committees. The procession again formed, 
and proceeded to the New Bridge, where a sumptuous entertainment had been prepared by 
the citizens of Albany, for themselves and their guests, and of which they partook. The guests 
Wf-re then conducted to one of the most splendid hotels, and there received every attention that 
the Albany Committee had prepared for them. On the following morning (November third,) 
six steam-boats, dressed with the flags of different nations, were put under the direction of your 
Committee, at whose invitation the numerous guests of the Corporation repaired on board, at 
about ten o'clock, among whom were, besides the Committees of the west, the Governor and 
Lieutenant-Governor of the State, Generals Stephen, Solomon, and Jacob R. Van Rensselaer, 
Simeon De Witt, Mr. Geddes, Hon. A. S. Conklin, the Tre;isurer and Comptroller of the State 
of New York, together with a most respectable Delegation from .\lbany. 

On the voyage down the Hudson this sj 1 !ndid fleet was greeted by a discharge of cannon at 
every town and village on its banks ; at night the public and private buildmgs of each vilhige 
were brilhantly illuminated ; in some, rockets were discharged, and in others bon-fires were 
kindled, to demonstrate the joy of the inhabitants. These exhibitions were the more grateful 
because it was evident that the inhabitants rejoiced not so much on their own account, as on that 
of their western friends, with whom they were now to be more closely united. 

On arriving at West Point, about the middle of the night, the officers of that post, upon 
special invitation came on board the fleet, and brought with them an elegant band of music. 
The fleet had been expected to pass the garrison at an earlier hour, and every preparation had 
been made by its Commander to pay suitable honors to the distinguished citizens on board, but 
owing to the lateness of the hour these honors were paid in advance, and before the appearance 
of the fleet. The ofiicers proceeded with your Committee to New York, as guests of the Cor- 
poration, and it was pleasing to witness the heartfelt gratulations which they exchanged with 
their fellow-citizens on the joyous occasion. Your Committee would do injustice to their own 
feelings were they to omit acknowledging the obligations they were mider to Mr. Charles Khind, 



smd Captains. Lockvyood and Wiswall, for the very able manner in which they conducted the fleet 
down the Hudson ; under the immediate command of the former, aided by the two latter gentle- 
men the entire flotilla was kept in regular order, varying its positions at pleasure, by means of sig^ 
nals ; nor are your Committee under less obligations to those gentlemen for their care and atten- 
tion in providing rich entertainments on board the fleet for the guests of the Corporation. Thus 
circumstanced, your Committee need scarcely add that a more happy party never traversed that 
river, since its first discovery by the great and enterprising navigator whose name it bears. 

The sun rose upon the morning of the Fourth of November, through an unusually clear and 
cloudless sky, and it seemed as if the beneficent smiles of Heaven were shed upon the accom- 
plishment of the great work which had been achieved under its own auspices. At seven o'clock 
the fleet arrived at the North Battery, where it was greeted by a national salute ; at this momeirt 
the steimi-boat Washington, bearing the standard with the arms of the City appeared in view, 
making its even and rapid course towards the flotilla. On coming up it was found that the Com- 
mittee of Arrangements of the Corporation of New York, had gone out to meet and welcome 
their guests, and your Committee now found all the assurances they had given to their fellow- 
citizens of the west, more than realized ; pleasure beamed in every face, and gave at once a 
passport to the heart. What followed is reserved for other and abler hands to describe. Your 
Committee now close their Report, by adding a list of the gentlemen invited by them as guests 
of the Corporation, viz. : — 


Hon. Samuel Wilkeson, 
Captain Thadoeus Joy, 
Major David Burt, 

Doctor H. R. Stags, 
Mr. Heman B. Totter. 
Captain M. M. Dox, 

Mr. S. Wells. 


E. B. Strong, 
A. V. T. Leavitt, 
Levi Ward, 
b. f. hvlbert, 

Elisha Johnson, 
Abelard Revnolds, 
Rufus Beach, 
C. A. Van Slyck. 

JosHPA Form AN, 

Archy Kasson. 

Warner Baldwin. 


D. W. FoRMAN, 


Mr. Spafford. 


William Clarke, President of the Corporation of Utica. 

Hon. Jonas Platt, Charles Broadhead, 

Thomas H. Hdbbard, Richard R. Lansivg. 

Alexander Coventry. 

Norton Crane. 

Reverend Mr. Moselv. 

William James, 
Allen Brown, 
Elisha Jenkins, 
John Townsend, 
Ebenezer Baldwin, 
James Stevenson, 
John H. Webb, 
William Caldwell, 
Walter Clark, 
John I. Boyd, 
James King, 
Welcome Esleeck, 

Selah Reeve, 
John W. Brown, 
John W. Knevels, 

Which is respectfully submitted, 
.Vew York, Dec. 10, 1825. 


Wm. Walsh. 

John Cassidy, 
George Galpin, 
George R. Hf.ndricksOiS 
John Taylor, Jur. 
John Meads, 

R. M. Meigs, 
E. G. Gracie, 
Patrick Cassidy, 

H. V. Hart, 

Joseph Alexander, 

S. S. Fowler, 
Alfreo Co.nkling. 

Thomas Philips, Jun. 
David Ruggles, 
James C. Clinton, 


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Ik pursuance of die arrangements concluded on by the Committee of the Corporation and the 
citizens of New York, and the citizens of Albany, Alderman IVyckoff and Mr. Assistant Hone 
proceeded to Albany to tender to the Municipality and citizens of that place, and the several 
Committees from Buffalo, and the other towns of the north and west, the congratulations of 
the Corporation of the City of New York, upon the completion of the Great Canal. Those 
gentlemen, after their arrival in Albany, proceeded a few miles from Albany, and there met 
the Canal boats, on board of which were the Committees from the west, and Aldermen King 
and Davis, of New York. They embarked on board of the boats, and went with them to the 
City of Albany, where they united in the procession formed by the citizens of Albany, and with 
them proceeded to the Capitol. At that place were assembled the Governor and Lieutenant- 
Governor of the State, — several Members of the Senate and House of Assembly, — the Officers 
of State, — the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of Albany, — the various Committees from the 
west and the north, and a large concourse of strangers and citizens. 

At this place Mr. Hone, in behalf of the Corporation and citizens of (he City of New York, 
made the followins address : — 




" We are deputed by the Corporation of the City of New York, to commu- 
nicate to the citizens of our sister city of Albany, and to the Committees representing the 
flourishing counties of the western section of the State, their congratulations on the successful 
completion of the Great Western Canal. 

" This event has already been announced from the shores of Lake Erie, to where the waters 
of the Hudson unite with the Atlantic ; and the report of the cannon, which lately defended our 
country's honor, has triumphantly conveyed to us the intelligence that tlie work is completed. 
The importance of this event is attested by the glowing interest evinced by all classes of our 
fcUow-citizens, and by the joyous alacrity with which all unite in this day's Celebration. 

" It is not my intention to give a history of the origin and progress of this great work ; that 
task is assigned to abler hands, and the gentleman who has undertaken it will, no doubt, do justice 
to the merits of all who have contributed to its success — those who tirst conceived the noble 
project — the Members of our State Legislature, who rendered to it, in all its stages, an honest 
and efficient support — and the Executive of the State, who, boldly conteniling against the oppo- 
sition of the prejudiced, and removing the doubts of the timid, did not hesitate to risk his per- 
sonal popularity on the issue. 

" The pen of the historian will inscribe on the tablet of fame, the names of Schuyler, 
Morris, Clinton, Van Rensselaer, De Witt, Porter, North, Eddy, Piatt, and Forman, and other 
active supporters of the Canal system, and posterity will award to them the illustrious title of 
benefactors of the State. 

" The work is completed ; its beneficial effects are already felt and acknowledged, and the 
mind of the patriot looks forward with proud anticipation to the future. A friendly and profit- 
able intercourse is at once opened to distant parts of our country — the exchange of the products 
of the soil for the commodities of foreign parts, which use, and the force of habit have rendered 
necessary to the enjoyment of life, being effected with facility, and at a trifling expense, will tend 
to enrich the State, and to accelerate the progress of refinement; while the friendly interchange 
of kind offices and good feelings between the citizens of distant sections of our country, will 
serve to consolidate the Union of the States, and to preserve inviolate our republican institutions, 

under which we have risen to an unexampled degree ol" nalioiial and individual prosperity, and 
by which alone we are rendered capable to appreciate and enjoy it. 

•' The complete success wliich has attended this first work of internal navigaliou, has com- 
municated to all parts of the nation a degree of enterprise and public spirit hitherto unknown ; 
already have otlier States embarked with zeal in the same career, and associations of individuals, 
encouraged by the example now before us, have engaged in similar undertakings, undismayed 
by the chilling apprehension that works of public utility call be accomphshed only by the sacri- 
fice of private wealth. 

" As members of a great National Confederacy, we have much cause for rejoicing at the 
accomplishment of an undertaking by which all must be benefitted ; but, on the present occasion, 
I should do injustice to my feelings, as a citizen of New York, if I did not remind you, in a strain 
of pride and exultation, that this is exclusively a State B^ork. In its infancy its feeble hands were 
in vain extended to the General Government for aid and support, and the State of New York, 
uniiided, unsupported, and relying only upon its own energies, and the patriotism of its oivn 
citizens, b-?gan with zeal, prosecuted with spirit, and has now successfully completed an enter- 
prise which seemed to require the power and resources of an empire to accomplish. 

" 1 hope my language may not be misconstrued, but I declare, with the pride which becomes 
a citizen of the State of New York, 1 rejoice, from my heart, that every dollar of its cost has 
been drawn from our own pockets. Let us then, fellow-citizens, regard in the event we now 
celebrate, an earnest of what may be effected by unanimity, and a devotion to the public ser- 
vice ; let no sectional views, no party prejudices, no unworthy jealousies, mar the glorious pros- 
pect now before us. By union among ourselves we shall concentrate the force of the State — its 
voice will be heard in the councils of the nation, and it will form, as was intended by the God of 
nature, the proudest pillar in the noblest edifice which has ever been reared upon the founda- 
tions of rational Uberty and equal rights. 

•' In tendering the congratulations of the Corporation of New York, we are instructed to 
invite the Corporation of this City, together with the several Conamittees assembled here, to 
repiir with us to New York, where they will be received by a Deputation from that Body, and 
will unite with them in the celebration of this joyful event." 


After Mr. Hone's address, Mr. James, in behalf of the citizens of Albany, addressed the 
persons assembled ; after which, the Honorable James Tallmadge, Lieutenant Governor, for 
and on behalf of the Committees from the west and north, made the following reply : — 

Mr. Chairman, 

" In behalf of the several Committees from the west, who are now present, 
I am desired to tender their thanks for the kind and cordial reception bestowed upon them by 
the citizens of Albany, while touching at this place, on their voyage from Erie to the ocean. 
They direct me to reciprocate the sentiments expressed by you, and by him (Mr. Hone) who 
preceded you, and to tender to you, to him. and to this people, congratulations on the joyful 
event which we this day celebrate. 

" That Erie should have been united to the Hudson and to the ocean, is a proud triumph of 
the arts over the works of nature. It is a just cause of joy to this people, and affords matter 
for the admiration of this age. But that this great work should have been accompUshed by the 
enterprises and the resources of a single State, is the best basis for our future glory. The con- 
quering hero may bespangle his banners with the tears of the widow and the orphan ; but it is 
-our high ambition to gain the civic wreath. May our glories ever be numbered by the benefits 
conferred, rather thim by the injuries inflicted upon our fellow-mortals. 

" The industry and the enterprise of our citizens have subdued the wilderness of the west. 
The land where so lately the wild beast prowled, and the wild man roamed, is occupied 
by peaceful husbandmen, and now resounds with the industrious hum of man in the 
industrious pursuits of civilized life. The mighty stream, which wildly running in its precipi- 
tous course, leapt from the dizzy height into the deep abyss, dashing its foaming billows on the- 
cataract below, tamed by the enterprise and industry of our citizens, abstains from its mad 
career, and guided by the plastic hand of art, now meanders through your settlements, adminis- 
tering not only to agriculture, commerce, and manufactures, but to all the purposes of civilized 
life. That such mighty doings are this d;iy accomplished, here are the witnesses," (pointing to 
the several Committees from the west.) " These are the navigators from the west, who come 
bringing with them the waters of Erie, to commingle with the waters of the ocean. 

"* Believing that the people of this State, would be pleased to be represented in the celebra- 
tion of an event so important to their prosperity and honor, the Governor and Lieut.-Governor 
have partaken, as guests, in the voyage from Buffalo to this place, and will continue onward to 


the ocean. It has been one continued scene of welcome, joy, and hilarity. Our brethren of 
the west have deputed these Committees as representatives to their brethren of the east and 
south. These are the navigators who sailed the first vessel from Erie to the ocean. Permit 
me, sir, to introduce these men to you, and to this people, as gentlemen whose merits entitle 
them to respect and to hospitality. 

The procession was then again formed, and marched to the bridge across the Albany basin, 
where they partook of an elegant collation, prepared by the citizens of Albany. 

The next morning the Committees from New York, with their guests, the gentlemen com- 
posing the Committees from the west, went on board the steam boat, Chancellor Livingston, 
engaged for the occasion, accompanied by the Seneca Chief, which was towed by the Chancellor 
Livingston ; the Young Lion of the West, by the Constitution ; and the Black Rock boat by the 
Chief Justice Marshall. Five other steam boats, thronged with citizens, left at the same time. 
They proceeded to the City of New York. During their passage down the Hudson, they 
received the congratulations of the several towns on the river, and at Newburgh partook of a 
collation prepared for them. 

All which is respectfully submitted, 


Kovemher, 1825. 




-Ve-u,' York, Kovcmhcr 4, 1825. 
Dear Sir, 

Agreeably to your request, the undersigned proceeded up the Hudson, this 
morning, in the steam-boat Washington, for the purpose of meeting the fleet of boats from the 
north and west; and of receiving, and maldng welcome, the Committees from those sections, as 
they should arrive within our jurisdiction, on their passage to the ocean. 

At sun-rise, we met our new and anxiously desired visitants, between the State Prison and 
Weehawk, when the Commander of our boat. Captain E. S. Bunker, hailed the leading boat of 
the flotilla, and inquired the place from where she w;is, and her destination, to which the cheer- 
ing answer was returned, by Charles Rhind, Esq. acting as Admiral, that she was " from Lake 
Erie, and bound for Sandy Hook." 

Had the great Poet of Nature been present, he would have exclaimed with reason, 

" Now let the kettle to the trumpets speak, 
" The trumpets to the cannoneer without, 
" The cannons to the heav'ns, the heav'ns to earth ; 
" Come, begin.'' 


On being received on board of the Chancellor Livingston, we were introduced to the 
Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, the Canal Commissioners, and Committees and Deputations 
from dififerent parts of the State, appointed to assist in the Celebration, and to whom we had the 
honor to present the following address : — 

" Upon this auspicious occasion, when the great Lakes of North America, are, by means of 
our Canals, to be united with the ocean, and, in consequence of this, the State of New York 
is to become, more than ever, a connecting and important Member of the American Confederacy, 
we are deputed by the Corporation of the City of New York, in behalf of themselves and 
tlieir constituents, to welcome you to their shores and waters — to reciporate your congratula- 
tions — and to request your acceptance of their most cheerful hospitahties. 

" The accomplishment of this interesting object, to the commemoration of which we are 
indebted for your visit, will, in future ages, be ranked among the most splendid efforts of genius. 

" How many months and years of profound study and application, on the part of some of 
our wisest citizens, were expended, before the mighty project was matured, and all the springs 
of action, necessary to bring it to perfection, were fully arranged and systematized, it is impos- 
sible now to calculate or determine. 

"What new combinations, favorable to the growth and prosperity of this section of our 
empire, are to take their rise from this magnificent work, and shed their benign effects upon 
present and future generations, it is equally impossible to conjecture, and can only be ascertained 
by the lapse of time. 

" But we may rest satisfied, that, as it is the product of the most comprehensive intellect, 
and of the most lofty patriotism, — as it is calculated to extend and multiply the advantages of 
external and international commerce, and the essential interests of agriculture and the mechanic 
arts, — and more especially as it is to render the chain of our Union stronger and brighter, — so 
will its projectors and friends receive the blessings of their cotemporaries, and of posterity, 
and their names be enrolled by the faithful pen of history, as pubhc benefactors. 

" We repeat to you our congratulations. Gentlemen, that we are permitted to join you in 
celebrating the vmion of our northern and western frontiers, with our Atlantic sea-board, and 


we invoke the Great Father of the Waters, and of the Land, and who is the Maker and Lord of 
all things, to smile upon our undertaking, and upon all the concerns of our beloved country." 

To wliich the following reply was made, by Governor Clinton : — 

" The congratulatory address of the Corporation of the City of New York, on the comple- 
tion of the Erie and Champlain Canals, has been received, by the several Bodies to which it 
has been presented, with the most profound respect, and with the most cordial reciproca- 

" In offering to you our felicitations on an occasion so honorable to the intelhgence and 
patriotism of this State, we can add but little to the forcible views which you have taken of 
this consummation. In its auspicious influence on the interests of agriculture, manufactures, and 
commerce — on the duration of the Union of the States — on the holy cause of Republican 
Government — on the elemental principles of social prosperity, it is a measure of the tirst 
importance, and will be felt and recognized as such by all future times. 

" The gratifications naturally associated with the celebration of this event, are greatly 
enhanced by its intimate connexion with the prosperity of the City of New York. 

" Standing near the confines of the ocean, and now connected, by navigable communications 
with the great Lakes of the north and west, there will be no limits to your lucrative extensions 
of trade and commerce. The valley of the ftlississippi will soon pour its treasures into this 
great emporium, through the channels now formed and forming; and, wherever wealth is to be 
acquired, or enterprise can be attempted, the power and capacity of your City will be felt, and 
its propitious inlluence on human happiness, will be acknowledged. 

" The munificence which has distinguished the City of New York, in liberal appropriations 
for education, charity, and public accommodation, evinces the wisdom, public spirit, and energy 
of its constituted authorities ; and reflects honor upon our country, of which it forms a most 
important portion ; and every measure which tends to enlarge the sphere of your useful 
operations, and to mcrease your means of dispensing good, will, we trust, always be hailed as of 
primary importance by the good people of this State. 



" We entreat you to accept our best acknowledgmenta for your kindness, and for your 
arrangements, on an occasion so worthy of the hospitality and munificence of this great and 
opulent City ; and we most humbly implore the choicest visitations of the blessings of Heaven, 
on you and your constituents." 

The several boats then proceeded to their stations, to give to the Corporation and their 
guests an opportunity of embarking on this joyful visit to the ocean, and of celebrating the 
opening of a communication between our inland seas with the Atlantic, which it is hoped will 
endure, while the waves of either shall continue to roll. 

While passing down the river, for the puqiosc just mentioned, our newly arrived friends 
were greeted with the peal of bells, martial music, and the roar of cannon, in our City, and in 
diflferent parts of the harbor, — and their reverberations from the rocky shor'es, and romantic cliffs 
of New Jersey, added, if possible, new glories to those that were opening, on one of the finest 
days in autumn. Earth, air, sea, and skies, seemed to unite in the invitation to rejoice ; — the 
face of nature was illuminated with a smile from Heaven ; — the scene was magnificent and 
imposing, and altogether beyond description ; and, surrounded as we were, with glowing hearts 
and animated countenances, we could not but give way to the feelings of admiration and gratitude, 
with which :dl were enraptured. 

At nine o'clock the Corporation, with their numerous guests, repaired to the steam-boats 
Washington, Fulton, and Providence, at White-hall SUp, where were also stationed the barges 
Lady Clinton and Lady Van Rensselaer, which had been engaged, by order of the Corporation, 
for the invited ladies. And shortly after the above hour (the embarkation of the joyous throng 
being completed, and being joined by the boats from the north and west) the whole proceeded 
round the Battery, and up the East river, to the Navy Yard, where salutes were fired. On 
returning they were joined by several other boats and bands of music, and the wharves of the 
City, and the shores and heights of Brooklyn, were crowded with spectators, all pressing forward, 
and eager to participate in the festivities, bustle, and hilarity of the day. 

When the fleet arrived between the Battery and Castle Williams, they were joined by the 
Marine and Nautical Societies, in the ship Hamlet, which had been fitted up by them, with flags 
and standards, in a style of splendor that could not be surpassed. The whole were here arranged 
and manoeuvred by signals, preparatory to the display that was to follow, in the procession to the 


sea, and the spectacle became beautiful and interesting beyond anticipation. The Battery — the 
neighbouring shores — the ships and vessels in the harbour, and shoals of small craft, sporting 
about on the calm surface of the Bay, teemed and swarmed with men, women, and children, of 
every rank and condition, who testified their high gratification, by all the expressions, and by 
every method in their power. This elegant, and almost magical prospect, has already out-lived 
the power of adequate description, but will long be retained in the recollection of those who 
witnessed it, as an object of the most pleasing wonder, ;ind of the most delightful association. 

All arrangements being made with promptitude and regularity, the grand Aquatic Procession 
commenced, and proceeded down the Bay, like some air drawn vision, of matchless grace and 
proportions, occupying the utmost stretch of the eye, and absorbing every faculty and power of 
comprehension, amid loud, repeated, and enthusiastic cheers, from every quarter. 

We are, with great respect. 

Your obedient Servants, 




The Select Committee of the Corporation, specially appointed to attend the ladies who were 
the invited guests of the Corporation, in the late Canal Celebration, 

Respectfully Report, 

That every due precaution was made by the Committee, to render the passage of the ladies, 
to the ocean, safe and agreeable. The barge Lady Chnton was securely attached to the steam- 
boat Commerce, so as to prevent any possible accident. The barge was elegantly decorated 
with flowers, evergreens, Eind other ornaments. A superb band of music was provided, which 
played, at intervals, national airs, and the finest pieces. A splendid collation, with every 
deUcacy, was prepared, in the greatest profusion. 

A little before eight o'clock, a. m. on the morning of the fourth of November, the Com- 
mittee repaired on board the barge Lady Clinton, and the steam-boat Commerce, lying at Pier, 
No. 1, east side of the Battery. Before nine o'clock, a. m. the barge and Commerce were 
tilled with the most respectable ladies of the City to overflowing. Amongst them were Mrs. 



Governor Clinton, Mrs Cadwallader D. Golden, Mrs. Dale (late Mrs. Fulton), and the wives 
and daughters of the Members of the Common Council, together with many ladies of distinction, 
from our sister States. 

Upon a signal being given the whole flotilla were in motion ; the barge and Commerce, 
placed in the most disringuished situation in the hne, proceeded up the East River, to the Navy 
Yard, where a national salute was fired, and the officers of the United States Navy united in the 
Celebration- The flotilla then returned and passed the Battery, and slowly and majestically 
proceeded to the ocean ; the barge Lady Clinton, receiving from the whole Aquatic Procession, 
and every ship and vessel which she passed, the most marked attention, as a token of the pro- 
found respect which is due to the matrons and daughters of the Republic. 

Upon reaching a certain point in the ocean, the whole flotilla were grouped together in a 
circular form, and his Excellency, tiovernor Clinton, poured the waters of Lake Erie into the 
sea, and Doctor Mitchill the waters from different parts of the world. The flotilla were then 
thrown into squadron and line, and proceeded on its return toward the City. 

The sound of the bugle then announced to the ladies that dinner was ready. They repaired 
to the Cabin, where a sumptuous repast was prepared by Captain Seymour, in his best style. 
The Committee, .issisted by several gentlemen, who had attended the ladies on board, did all in 
their power to render every thing acceptable to their distinguished guests. 

In passing the British vessels, the same marked respect was shewn by their officers and 
crews ; our most favourite national airs were played by their bands of music, and the poUte 
civihties shewn by them, were duly acknowledged and returned by the whole flotilla. 

Upon reaching the Battery, the ladies formed a procession, Mrs. Clinton and Mrs. Colden at 
their head ; the band of music preceded them, and the Committee conducted the ladies from the 
Battery to the Bowling Green, where they were handed to their carriages, and proceeded to 
their respective homes. 

It affords the Committee the utmost satisfaction to add, that not a single accident occurred to 
mar the pleasure of the day. 


Too much praise cannot be given to C;iptain Seymour for his gentlemanly deportment, — his 
constant efforts to render every thing agreeable to the ladies, — the splendid decorations with 
which the barge was ornamented, — and the richness and dehcacy of the repast. 

Respectfully submitted, 


November, 1825. 


The Order of arrangement was, that the Revenue Cutter, the Siiip Hamlet, the Pilot- 
boats, and City Fleet of Steam-boats, should assemble between Castle Garden and Gover- 
nor's Island, and after the escorting Fleet from Albany had returned from the Navy Yard, 
the whole were to unite. The View is taken at this moment. On the right, the ship 
H,iudet is taking her station ; the Flag-ship followed by the escorting Fleet, with the Canal- 
boats are forming the Line ; — the Revenue Cutter, finishing the salute, is about to talie her 
station, towed by the steam boat Nautilus ; — the Pilot boats preparing to get under way ; — the 
steam boat Washington bearing the City ^'lag, and having the Corporation on board, is followed 
by the Fulton with Guests of the Corporation ; — astern of her is the Commerce with the 
Safety-barge L idy Clinton, having on board the La lies invited by the Corporation ; the Barges 
belonging to the Whitehall Watermen, are taking their place in the Line, and the steam-boat 
James Kent is bearing down from the North River to join the City Fleet, which is lying too 
in various directions until the Line shall be formed. In the foreground are the guns used by 
the Whitehall Watermen. 

The Fleet was composed of the following Vessels : — 

United States Schooner, Porpoise, - - - 1 

United States Revenue Cutter, Alert, - - - 1 

Ship Hamlet, - ... ] 

Pilot-boats, - - - 4 

Steam-boats, - - - - 29 

Canal-boats, - - 3 

Barges, - - - - 7 

Total, - - 40 




«! mAi'%' © fC Ji. i:^ ~\ !\ . ^K I.E j» KA T I o jr 

VIE f ' ^ *' 




The Subscriber, in compliance with the request of the Honorable R. Riker Chairman of the 
Committee of Arrangements for celebrating the Union of the waters of the Lakes with the 
Ocean ; 

Respectfully Reports, 

That, having been appointed by the Honorable the Corporation, to superintend the Grand 
Naval Fete, to be given in commemoration of the completion of the Erie Canal, and to com- 
mand the Fleet which was to convoy the first Canal-boats from Lake Erie ; from their entrance 
into the tide waters of the Hudson to the Atlantic Ocean, and back to the City : being aware 
of the difficulties attending the important charge, I waited upon the proprietors of the diflferent 
Steam-boats, the Officers of the Marine and Nautical Societies, the Wardens of the Port, Harbour 
Masters, Pilots, and Bargemen, to consult respecting the manner in which this interesting 
cereiiiOny should be creditably and properly performed. Finding that all these Gentlemen 
were animated by one feeUng, a Meeting was held and Sub-Committees appointed, who waited 
on Commodore Chaimcey at the Navy Yard, to ascertain how far the Officers of the Navy 
would assist on the occasion. That Gentleman evinced the greatest possible patriotism by 
assuring us that he would do every thing in his power to forward our views, and cheerfully 
acquiesced in the plan which had been proposed. 

It was determined that Capt. Whetten, President of the Marine Society and mvsolf (represent- 
ing the Marine Department), should repair to Albany in order that we might board the tirst Ciinal- 
boat on her entrance into the tide-waters of the Hudson ; — that the Steam-boats plymg on the 
North River (which had been unanimously offered for the occasion) should form the escorting 
Fleet from Albany to New York; — that the Steam-boats belonging to the City should form a 
second fleet, to unite with the former on their reaching the City, and that the frig-ate Cyane would 
be dressed at the Navy Yard, where Commodore Chauncey and the Officers of the Navy were 
to come on board of the Flag-ship ; — the Fleet then to proceed to the Battery, where the 
boats Washington having on board the Honorable the Corporation, and the Fulton and the L;iily 
Clinton with their Guests, together with the City Fleet of Steam-boats, should join us, at the 
same time the Barges belonging to the Whitehall Watermen, were to t.dce their station ; — that 
then we should be met by a Ship, prepared by the Alarine and N"autical Societies, which was 
to lead us on the way to the Ocean ; — that the Rev miu2 Cutter after firing a salute, should 
precede the Line, and immediately thereafter a squa iron of Pilot-bouts should approach, h;dl 
us, anJ offer a Pilot to conduct the Fleet to the Oc'ai, where thi- United States Schooner Por- 
poise was to be anchored the preceding night, and be the "Deputation from Neptune" to greet 
us on our arrival in his Dominions. 


Messrs. Robert L. LiviffcsTON and John Townsend, in behalf of the North River Steam- 
boat Company. 

Messrs. Caleb Horton and Richard S. AVilliams, for the Fulton Steam-boat Company. 

Messrs. N. C. Griffith, Anthony N. Hoffman, Michael Van Beuren, \\m. Roe, and 
Thomas Brooks, on the part of the Hudson River Company. 

Mr. S. H. Herrick, for the Troy Steam-boat Company. 

Mr. Wm. C. Redfield, for the Steam Navigation Company. 

Captains John Whf.tten, James Lovett, and VVm. M'Intire, of the Marine Society. 

Captains M. R. Burke, T. B. \'ermilye, S. Candler, S. C. Reid, and C. Stubbs, of the 
Nautical Society. 

Captiiins George Coffin and Obed. Smith, on the part of the Wardens of the Port. 

Captain John Minugh, on the part of the Harbour Masters. 

Captains David Mitchell and Israel Navarro, on the part of the Pilots. 

Messrs. Charles Magkes and Alfred Commever, on the part of the Whitehall Watermen, 


The necessary arrangements being completed, and signals and instructions prepared for 
every vessel belonging to the Fleet, Captain Whetten and myseli" repaired to Albany, and arrived 
there on the second instant in time to board the first Canal-boat from Lake Erie, " The Seneca 
Cliief," immediately before her entrance into the tide-waters of the Hudson. 

On the morning of the third instant, the fleet of Steam-boats, which by making extra trips, 
had assembled on this occasion, and which were superbly dressed with flags of every descrip- 
tion, (the Chancellor Livingston having been selected as the Flag-ship and to receive the Guests 
of the Corporation,) dropped out from the wharves, and prepared to form in Line. At this 
moment the steam-boat Chief Justice Marshall arrived from Troy, having in tow the Canal- 
boat " Niagara of Black Rock," which had entered the Hudson at that place, and now came to 
join the Fleet. 

The Canal-boats having been taken in tow, the Squadron formed in Line, and consisted of the 
following vessels : — 

1. The Chancellor Livingston, Captain T. S. Lockwood, which bore the Flag of the 
State of New York, and towed the Canal-boat " Seneca Chief" of Buffalo. On board of the 
Chancellor, His Excellency Governor Clinton ; Lieutenant-Governor Tallmadge ; the Hon. 
S. Van Rensselaer, and the other Canal Commissioners and Engineers ; the Officers of the 
State, and Committees from Albany and the West ; and the different Committees from the City, 
were embarked. 

2. The Constitution, Captain A. Bartholomew, having in tow the Canal-boat " Young 
Lion of the West" from Rochester. 

3. The Chief Justice Marshall, Captain R. W. Sherman, with the Canal-boat " Niagara 
of Black Rock" in tow. 

4. The Constellation, Captain R. G. Cruttenden. 

5. The SwiFTsuRE, Captain H. Stocking. 

6. The Richmond, Captain W. L. Cochran. 

7. ThL' Olive Branch, Captain H. Moore, having in tow the barge Matil la. 

8. The Saratoga, Captain James Benson, acting as tender to the Fleet. 

These vessels were all splendidly adorned with flags and streamers, and amply supplied with 
bands of martial music. 



The wharves and piers of Albany were crowded with spectators, and after being saluted by 
artillery, and cheered by the citizens, which was returned by the Fleet, the whole squadron 
got under way, and proceeded down the river. The day was remarkably fine, and the gay 
drapery of the different vessels flowing in the breeze as thoy glidjd through the Islands, or 
passed the different turns of the River, presented a grand and imposing spectacle. The shores 
were every where lined with spectators, and at all the landings artillery was stationed to fire 
salutes, which were cheerfully returned by the Fleet. At times, as the river permitted, they 
formed symetrically in squadron, at others, (and particularly in passing Towns or Landings,) they 
were in line. 

On reaching Hudson, and discovering that the fine rising ground which there borders the 
River, was filled with spectators, I made signal for the Fleet to stop their engines, and drift down 
with the tide ; Artillery was placed on the brow of Prospect Hill where salutes were fired, as well 
as from Athens on the opposite side of the river. After returning the salutes, the bands playing 
national airs and the sky rent with cheers, the Fleet proceeded on the Voyage. The scene 
here was decidely one of the most magnificent witnessed on the river. 

At every landing ceremonies nearly similar were performed ; the shore was every where 
lined with multitudes of spectators, and the whole mass of our population seemed to be animated 
by one feeling on this occasion. The Canal-boat " Young Lion of the West"' had a small 
cannon on board, and aided the Steam-boats in returning the various salutes. 

When we reached Hudson, the first Sea-port on our voyage down, Iwas forcibly struck with 
the circumstance of the '"Young Lion" coming from a flourishing town far in the interior, 
(and the location of n'hich all of us remember being in the bosom of the wilderness,) thua 
complying with nautical etiquette ; it was an extraordinary proof of the enterprise which 
characterises our country, and further shews that our colonists carry with them, in their 
pioneering excursions, that pohty of manners and knowledge of societ)^ which so eminently 
distinguish the new settlements of this State. 

In the afternoon, complimentary visits were exchanged between the different boats. Before 
we reached Staatsburgh it was dark, but on approaching the manor of James D. Livingston 
Esq. the patriotism of that gentleman was signally displayed by having his house splendidly 
illiuuinated, which, from the Fleet, had a most brilliant and beautiful effect. 


Poujhkeepsie an-' Xowburgh were also illuminated, and the Fleet fired salutes, and sent up 
some large rockets. At most ui' liie landings, and along the banks of the river, tar-barrels and 
bonfires were burning. 

It was past midnight when we reached West Point, the night being uncommonly dark ; 
the Officers of that Station, with their excellent band, were on the Wharf, and immediately on 
their coming on board, a n; siilute was fired from the heaviest Artillery, and some Rockets 
sent up ; the compliment was returned by the Fleet, and again repeated from the shox-e. The 
scene, from the darkness of the night, — the effect of the rockets, — and the reverberating cclio 
of the Artillery among the mountains, was one of the most sublime ever witnessed. 

The Fleet then pursued its course, and c;ime to anchor near the City, sometime belore 

The necessary arrangements being made, tliey got under way early on the morning of the 
fourth, and received a national salute of t^venty four gnns, from a dotachmont of Artillery 
placed at the North Battery. Shortly thereafter they were met by the clegnnt Steam-boat 
Washington, Captain Elihu S. Bunker, bearing the large Flag of the City ; she approached the 
Flag-ship and hailed " From whence came ye ?"' to which the Commander of the Fleet replied, 
"An escort from Lake Erie." " Where bound ?" " To the Atlantic — what vessel is that ?" 
" The Yacht of the City of New York, having on board a Deputation from the Honourable the 
Corporation, to welcome yon into our waters, congratulate you on this great event, and offer 
the hospitalities of the City." " We highly appreciate this mark of civility on the part of the 
City, and request the Deputation from the Honorable Corporation to come on board. I will 
send barges to convey them to the Flag-ship. 

Aldermen Cowdrey, Webb, Agnew, and Hedden (accompanied by the Officers of the 
Governor's Guard,) being conveyed on board the Chancellor Livingston, were introduced to 
his Excellency Governor Clinton, Lieutenant-Governor Tallmadge, the Canal Commissioners, 
Engineers, and the Committees from Albany and the West. Alderman Cowdrey delivered a 
lieat and very appropriate Address, to which Governor Clinton replied in his usual happy style. 

This ceremony being ended, the Fleet passed the British Sloops of War Swallow, Thomas 
Baldock Esq. Commander, and Kingfisher, James Henderson Esq. Commander, having the 


American Flag at the fore-top-gallant-masts, and being dressed for the occasion, they fired 
a salute which the Fleet returned, and then bore up for the East River. On passing the 
Revenue Cutter Alert, Captain Henry Cahoone, she fired a salute, and when we passed the 
Battery a national salute was fired by a detachment of Artillery placed there by General 
Benedict ; and we received another salute from the Whitehall Watermen, who had placed four 
guns on Pier No. 1 East River. 

On reaching the Navy Yard we found the United States Frigate Cyane beautifully dressed 
for the occasion ; a national salute was fired, and Commodore Chauncey with the Officers of 
the Navy repaired on board the Flag-ship, in the barges belonging to the Navy Yard. 

From thence the Fleet returned to the Battery, where they were joined by the Washington, 
having on board his Honor the Mayor and the Corporation with their Guests (amounting to eight 
hundred persons) ; the Fulton Captain Robert S. Bunker, the Providence Captain Charles 
TomUnson with other Guests of the Corporation ; and the Steam-boat Commerce Captain Sey- 
mour, having in tow the barge Lady Clinton, which Boat had been appropriated for the Ladies 
invited by the Corporation. She was superbly adorned with evergreens and flowers, and was 
crowded with the beauty and fashion of the City. 

The Fulton, Captiin R. S. Bunker, joined the Chancellor Livingston, so that Boats bearing 
the names of those distinguished Citizens of New York, who originally introduced Steam-boats, 
should have the honor of towing the first Canal-boat to the Ocean. Immediately thereafter the 
Watermen of Whitehall, in their pretty light boats, tastefully decorated, joined the Fleet, and 
took their stations in the following order : — 

1. The Ladv of the Lake, Messrs. Charles Magnes and John S, Magnes. 

2. Despatch, Messrs. Cornelius and Alfred Commeyer. 

3. Express, Messrs. Wm. Woods and Wm. Gibson. 

4. Brandywine, Messrs. I. Henry and M. Fairchilds. 

5. Sylph, Messrs. A. Hamilton and P. Fairchilds. 

6. Active, Messrs. J. C. Cully and W. Faight. 

7. Whitehall, jun. Messrs. J. Cliadvvick and J. WiUiams. 


A little farther the ship Hamlet, commanded by Captain I. G. Collin?, President of the 
Nautical Society, elegantly decorated with Flags, and having on board the Members of the 
Marine and Nautical Societies, hailed us, and after interchanging the usual nautical ceremonies, 
was invited to lead the Fleet to the Atlantic. At this mo-nent the City fleet of steam-boats came 
up in admirable order, and took their station in the Line, as follows ; — 

James Kent, Captain Thomas Wiswall. 

Oliver Elsworth, Captain D. Havens. 

Bolivar, Captain De Forest. ' 

SwiFTSuRE, Captain Stocking (with the barge Lady Van Rensselaer in tow.) 

Nautilus, Captain Vanderbilt. 

Long Branch, Captain Sutton. 

Fannv, Captain Davidson. 

LinnvEUS, Captain Peck. 

Governor Wolcott, Captmn Mills. 

John Marshall, Captain Grilling. 

George Washington, Captain Cole. 

OusATONic, Captain Vose. 

United States, Captain Brooks. 

Bristol, Captain Thomas. 

The revenue cutter Alert, Captain Cahoone. then tired another salute, and was requested 
by the Commander of the Fleet, to precede it to the ocean. Shortly thereafter the pilot-boats 
Grand Can;d, Ulysses, WilUam Bayard, and Gratitude, handsomely dressed, approached the 
Fleet, and after the customary nautical enquiries, offered their services to conduct us to our 
destination : a pilot was sent on board, and the boats requested to take their stations, flanking- 
the squadron. 

The weather being nearly calm, it became necessary to tow the ship, cutter, and pilot-boats. 
On signal being made, steam boats repaired from the Fleet, and immediately brought the vessels 
which could only be propelled by canvas, into their proper stations. National salutes were 
fired from Governor's Island, by the Detachment of Artillery at the Battery ; and by the Water- 
men at Pier No. 1 . East River. The Fleet then proceeded to the sea. 



As it progressed, preserving the utmost regularity in the manoeuvres, the scene was one 
which the pen cannot describe, and the pencil barely delineate. It is believed a more splendid 
spectacle was never beheld; it had more the appearance of a airy scene, than any in which 
mortals are engaged. 

On passing Fort La Fayette, a national salute was fired, and returned by the Fleet. Aldermen 
King and Taylor, a Deputation from the Corporation, then came on board the Chancellor 
Livingston, to conduct his Excellency the Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, and all the Com- 
mittees, on board of the Washington. 

On reaching the Ocean, the L'nited States schooner Porpoise, Lieutenant-Commandant 
Zantzinger, (which had been sent down the night before expressly for the purpose,) met us as a 
" Deputation from Neptune." She fired a salute, and immediately the whole Fleet formed a 
circle around her, of about three miles in circumference. 

His Excellency, Governor Clinton, then proceeded to perform the ceremony of comming- 
ling the waters of Lake Erie with those of the Atlantic. On board of the Seneca Chief, two 
elegant kegs, beautifully piiinted in green with gilded hoops, were brought down, containing 
" Water of Lake Erie :" from one of those the Governor poured a portion of tlie water into 
the sea ; and after delivering a short, but very pertinent Address, thus consummated the 

The Recorder and Committee of the Corporation, conducted to his Honor the Mayor, the 
Honorable C. D. Colden, who delivered to the Mayor a Memoir concerning the Erie Canal ; and 
Doctor Mitchill, from a number of bottles, containing water from every part of the world, 
poured their contents into the sea, as emblematical of our commercial intercourse with aU the 
nations of the earth ; after which the leiu-ned Doctor delivered a long and interesting discourse. 

At the moment the ceremony was perforining, a large ship (the Canton, Captain Lewis,) 
hove in sight, and observing the beautiful Fleet, fired a salute, which had an admirable efiect. 

Immediately preceding the ceremony I addressed the Governor, and stated that I had a 
request to make, which I was certain would afibrd his Excellency great pleasure to comply with. 
I requested permission to preserve a portion of the water to be used on this great occasion, in 


order to send it to our distinguished friend, and late illustrious visiter, Major-General La Fayette ; 
and for that express purpose, Messrs. George Dummer and Co. had prepared some bottles of 
American manufacture, and that Mr. Duncan Phjfe was to make boxes, to contain them, out 
of a piece of wood, then on board of the Seneca Chief. His Excellency cheerfully granted the 
request, and thanked me cordially for having thought of the measure. 

By arrangements made between Major-General Fleming, Grand Marshal conducting the 
Procession on shore, and the Commander of the Fleet, a constant communication was kept up, 
by means of the Telegraph under the charge of Captain John Greene, so that the proceed- 
ings of each were immediately conveyed to the other. 

The Porpoise then fired another salute, and the ceremony being concluded, the Fleet (prc- 
ceeded by the Porpoise, towed by two of the finest steam-boats,) circuitously and in beautiful 
order, fell into line and returned to the City ; on passing Fort La Fayette it was again saluted. 
The day was uncommonly fine and warm, and every manccuvre was performed by the different 
vessels in most admirable order. As the Fleet passed Governor's Island, it again received a 
national salute. 

On approaching the City, the British sloops of war fired mother salute, when a signal was 
made from the Flag ship, for the Fleet to pass round the ships, and return the compUment. 
Abreast of the vessels, the Porpoise manned the yards and gave three cheers, and the evcellent 
band from the Navy Yard (on board of the Fhig-ship), struck up " Gcd save the King ;"' and 
after passing round the sloops of war, the West Point band played the same air in fine style ; the 
crews of the British ships manned their sides, and gave three hearty cheers, their band playing 
" Yankee Doodle" at the same time. This interchange of good feelings, on so great an occasion, 
gave infinite satisfaction to all concerned. 

Captain Baldock of the Swallow, gave an elegant dejeun^, to a large party of ladies and gentlemen. The 
table was tastefully laid out, and a number of appropriate drawings displayed, represeating Britannia, Colum- 
bia, the Eagle, the Lion, the English and American Sailor, .>Jeptuue, Liberty, and the Flags of both Nations 
beautifully arranged. In one of the designs were two Canal Basins with doable Locks, one as coming tlirough 
Welch mountains, — the other as coming through .American mountains of granite ; on their basements were 
inscribed " Clintou" — " Bridgewater" in honor of men, whose pursuits in each country, were so similar. 

The FlePt then wore round, passed up the East River to Pier No. 1, (where the Watermen 
again fired a salute,) and landed the passengers in time to join the City Procession, which had 
reached the Battery. Not the smallest accident occurred during this interesting day, and it is 
believed every one landed fully satisfied with the excursion ; and agreably surprised at the 
splendid display wiiich they had witnessed. 

The tonnage of the steam-boats alone, employed on this occasion, amounted to six thousand 
tons ; and the number of passengers on board of the Fleet w;is estimated at seven thousand. 

The Caual-bont Seneca Chief, had on board a cargo of pot ashes, from Detroit, Sandusky, 
Erie, and ButTalo; white fish, from Lake Erie; flour, and butter, from Michigan, Ohio, and 
Buffalo ; and some bird's eye maple, and cedar wood, ordered by the Corporation, for the pur- 
pose of making boxes, for the medals to be struck on the occasion. 

There was also brought with her an Indian canoe, made by the Aborogines inhabiting the 
shores of L;ike Superior, which was presented by Mr. Thaddeus Joy of Buffalo, to the sub- 
scriber, who has deposited it in the City Hall, to be preserved as a memorial of the event. 

The Young Lion of the West, was loaded with flour in half-barrels, butter, apples, &c. and 
had on board a quantity of cedar tubs and pails, of very elegant worlunanship, manufactured in 
a pecuhar manner, at a new establishment in Rochester, and some brooms of a superior quality ; 
and had on deck a collection of wolves, foxes, racoons, and other living iinimals of the forest. 

The Niagara's cargo consisted of furs, flour in half-barrels, butter, and apples. 

The cabins of all these boats were elegantly fitted up, and afforded every possible accom- 
modation to the passengers. 

To reciprocate the attention of our friends in Buffalo, a superb keg, made by Mr. Alexander 
Wiley, having the arms of the City painted on it, and elegantly ornamented by Mr. Peter B. 
Lament, was filled with " water of the Adantic" and sent back in the Seneca Chief, to enable 
the citizens on the shores of Erie to complete the ceremonies, by mingling the waters of the 
briny deep, with those of the Lake. Messrs. Wiley and Lamont displayed their patriotism by 
declining to receive any compensation for their services : indeed the whole mass of our popula- 
tion seemed to be animated by one patriotic impulse on this memorable occasion. 


This faint outline of the splendid scene, is respectfilly submitted in compliance with jour 
request, but I feel myself inadequate to the task of giving a correct description of what you 
then beheld. The drawing furnished by Mr. Archibald Robertson, (taken at the moment the 
Fhets were uniting,) and the Diagram which I annex, of the ( leet when passing the British 
Sloops of War, wdl serve in some measure, to elucidate the description. 

The Commanders of the different steam-boats are entitled to the utmost praise, for the able 
manner in which the various evolutions were performed, and for the excellent discipline pre- 
served on board ; and I acknowledge myself under particular obligations to Captain Samuel 
Wiswall (who commanded the first steam-boat built by iMessrs. Livingston and Fulton), for his 
assistance on board of the Flag-ship, to Mr. Richard Powell who acted as Signal Officer, 
and to Captain Elihu S. Bunker, who (assisted by Mr. Samuel Townsend,) took charge of the 
detiiils of the City Fleet, whilst I repmred lo Albany to receive the Canal-boats. 

To Commodore Chauncey, Lieutenant-Commandant Zantzinger, the Officers of the Navy, 
and the Gentlemen composing the different Committees I feel much indebted for the efficient aid 
they were pleased to afford me. 

I endeavoured to exercise my best abilities in rendering the scene creditable to the City, and 
worthy of the great and mementous occasion, which called forth our exertions ; if I succeeded 
in doing it that justice, and in meriting the approbation of the Honorable the Corporation, my 
efforts will not have been in vain. 

With great respect, I have the honor to be, 

Your obedient Servant, 


^fe■w York, Xov. 10, 1825, 



Commodore Chauncev, and the Officers of the Navv ; Captain Henry Cahoone, of the 


Societies ; the Wardens of the Port, and Harbour Masters , the Pilots and Barge- 
men OF the City of New York ; and the Commanders op the steam-boats which 
COMPOSED the Fleet, escorting the first Canal-boats from Lake Erie to the 


Permit me, thus publicly, to express my grateful acknowledgments for the 
very efficient aid you were pleased to afford me, in making the necessary arrangements for con- 
ducting the splendid Fleet, on Friday last, to the Ocean. 

The promptness with which every arrangement was executed, and the extreme regularity 
in which every manoeuvre was performed, evinced a degree of disciphoe only surpassed by the 
patriotic feelings you displayed on the occasion. 

^Vith great respect, 

I am, 


Your obedient Servant, 

Xe-w York, Kov. 7, 1825. 











This truly benevolent and highly respectable Society is one of the oldest in the United States, 
and its benefits have been largely enjoyed by the widows and orphans of the deceased mariner. 
If was incorporated as early as the year, seventeen hundred and seventy, and its objects will 
more fully appear by the following Preamble, in the original Charter : — 

" Whereas our loving subjects, Leonard Lispenard, aad James Jauncey, of our City of New 
Yoik, Esquires ; Jacob Le Roy, William Walton, John Harris Cruger, Samuel Verplanck, 
Lawrence Kortwright, and Theophilact Bache, of our City, Gentlemen ; Linus King, Thomas 
Randall, D:miel Stiles, Augustine Lawrence, Anthony Rutgers, Robert Dale, and Robert Benson, 
of ou' said City, Mariners ; in and by their humble Petition, presented to our trusty and well- 
beloved Cadwallader Golden, Esq. our Lieutenant-Governor and Commander-in-Chief of our 
Province of New York, and the territories depending thereon, in America, on the seventh day 
of March, in this the tenth year of our reign, and read the same day in our Council for our said 
Province, having set forth in substance : Thai the Petitioners, agreeable to the example of 
several places on the continent of North America, had; with at least fifty other persons, most of 
them either principal inhabitants of our said City of New York, or masters of vessels sailing 
out of our port of New York, formed themselves into a Marme Soeiety, for the purpose of 
improving maritime knowledge, and for relieving indigent and distressed (and the wives and 
orjihan chdHren of deceased) mas ers of vessels: That such a Society, from the nature and 
design thereof, must be particularly advantageous to our said City : That several sums of 
money, to the amoiuit of two hundred pounds, bad already been subscribed to the said Society, 





This truly benevolent and highly respectable Society is one of the oldest in the United States, 
and its benefits have been largely enjoyed by the widows and orphans of the deceased mariner. 
It was incorporated as early as the year, seventeen hundred and seventy, and its objects will 
more fully appear by the following Preamble, in the original Charter : — 

" Whereas our loving subjects, Leonard Lispenard, aad James Jauncey, of our City of New 
York, Esquires ; Jacob Le Roy, William Walton, John Harris Cruger, Samuel Verplanck, 
Lawrence Kortwright, and Theophilact Bache, of our City, Gentlemen ; Linus King, Thomas 
Randall, Daniel Stiles, Augustine Lawrence, Anthony Rutgers, Robert Dale, and Robert Benson, 
of oui said City, Mariners ; in and by their humble Petition, presented to our trusty and well- 
beloved Cadwallader Colden, Esq. our Lieutenant-Governor and Commander-iu-Cliief of our 
Province of New York, and the territories depending thereon, in America, on the seventh day 
of March, in this the tenth year of our reign, and read the same day in our Council for our said 
Province, having set forth in substance : Tha; the Peiitioners, agreeable to the example of 
several places on the continent of North America, had; with at least fifty other persons, most of 
them either principal inhabitants of our said City of New York, or masters of vessels sailing 
out of our port of New York, formed themselves into a Manne Society, for the purpose of 
improving maritime knowledge, and for relieving indigent and distressed (and the wives and 
orjihan chddren of deceased) mas ers of vessels : That such a Societj-, from the nature and 
design thereof, must be particularly advantageous to our said City : That several sums of 
money, to the amoimt of two hundred pounds, had already been subscribed to the said Society, 


and from the expediency thereof, the Petitioners not only expected more and very considerable 
donations, but also an increase in number of members : And that the Petitioners humbly con- 
ceived, that the useful and benevolent purposes for which they had associated themselves, might 
be more effectually answered if they were incorporated, and did therefore, in and by their said 
Petition, most humbly pray for letters patent for incorporating them." 

The Charter was granted at New York, on the twelfth day of April, seventeen hundred 
and seventy, signed by Cadwallader Golden, Lieutenant-Governor and Commander-in-Chief of 
the Province. 

The Gentlemen first named as Officers were — 

Leonard Lispenard, President. 

John Leake, Vice-President. Linus King, Treasurer. 

Robert Benson, Secretary. 

From the fii-st Institution of the Society until the year seventeen hundred and eighty-six, it 
was by no means prosperous, but since that period it has continued to flourish in a high degree. 
Twenty-one hundred and eight Members and Honorary Members have been enrolled on its 
books, and the money collected for admission and yearly dues has amounted to one hundred and 
thirty thousand four hundred dollars, which has been disposed of in donations, expences, and 
the permanent fund, which is now considerable. 

The annual amount distributed by the Society is twenty-four hundred dollars, and the 
average number of widows seventy-four annually, besides orphans. The whole donations of 
the Society, since its commencement, amount to eighty-eight thousand one hundred. 

The Officers for the present year are — 

John Whetten, President. 
Wm. Whitelock, First Vice-President. J. Lovett, Second-Vice-President. 

Obed. Smith, Treasurer. Chris. Prince, Secretary. 

Thos. Fessenden, Counsellor. John Earle, Collector. 



The Marine Society was pstablished chiefly with a view to provide a fund for chnritablc pur- 
poses, but to mirin^rs, the w iiit of an Institution, whose views should Ui rnor ■ p irtioui iriy 
directed to the pn'oiotion of nautical science, had long been felt ; it was not, however, until 
the year eighteen hundred and twenty, that, by the active exertions of Captain Wm. Hamilton, 
and others, the present Institution was founded. It has not only surpassed the warmest antici- 
pations of its early I'riends, but aflfords an example which ouglit to be imitated in every sea-port. 

The object of this Institution is to excite and promote u-eful improvements in every branch 
of nauticid science, and, by creating a fund to be enabled to give efficiency to such discoveries 
and improvements as may appear worthy of countenance, whilst an association of men, skilled 
in the higher branches of science, it was thought, would not only give currency to the subjects 
of their research or examination, but create a stiiiiuliis in others whose acquirements were less 
distinguished, in order to enable them to gain admittance into the Society. 

The records of the Institution will prove the benefits which have already resulted from the 
efforts of its members, and they afford a flattering promise of what may hereafter be expected 
from it. 

At the commencement of the Institution sixteen of the most respectable Shipmasters of the 
Port termed the number which composed the Society ; at the present period the Books shew 
the names of one hundred and ninety Members and fifty Hononu-y Members, — the greater portion 
of the former are men commanding vessels, employed m Commerce, to every part of the Globe, 
many of them are distinguished for Mathematical and Scientific acquirements, and all are 
animated by an earnest desire to promote every branch connected in the remotest degree with 
the Science of Navigation. The acquirements necessary to gain admittance as a Member of the 
Institution have produced an emulation among the Commanders of our Merchant Vessels gene- 
rally, and the circumstance of being an Associate, has no inconsiderable influence now, (and 






The Marine Society was established chiefly with a view to provide a fund for charitable pur- 
poses, but to in.irin>ra, the w int of an Institution, whose vie.vs shoiilil he mor> p irticui ir!y 
directed to the promotion of nautical science, had long been felt ; it was not, however, until 
the year eighteen hundred and twenty, that, by the active exertions of Captain Wm. Hamilton, 
and others, the present Institution was founded. It has not only surpassed the warmest antici- 
pations of its Ciu-ly I'riends, but aifords an example which ought to be imitated in every sea-port. 

The object of this Institution is to excite and promote u-eful improvements in every branch 
of nauticid science, and, by creating a fund to be enabled to give efficiency to such riiscoveries 
and improvements as may appear worthy of countenance, whilst an association of men, skilled 
in the higher branches of science, it was thought, would not only give currency to the subjei;ts 
of their research or examination, but create a stimulus in others whose acquirements were less 
distinguished, in order to enable them to gain admittance into the Society. 

The records of the Institution will prove the benefits which have already resulted from the 
eflforts of its members, and they a£ford a flattering promise of what may hereafter be expected 
from it. 

At the commencement of the Institution sixteen of the most respectable Shipmasters of the 
Port formed the number which composed the Society ; at the present period the Books shew 
the names of one hundred and ninety Members and &fhf Honorary Members, — the greater portion 
of the former are men commanding vessels, employed m Commerce, to every part of the Globe, 
many of them are distinguished for Mathematical imd Scientific acquirements, and all are 
animated by an earnest desire to promote every branch connected in the remotest degree with 
the Science of Navigation. The acquirements necessary to gain admittance as a Member of the 
Institution have prorluced an emulation among the Commanders of our Merchant Vessels gene- 
rally, and the circumstance of being an Associate, has no inconsiderable influence now, (and 



hereafter it will no doubt have more) in giving additional weight to the character of those who 
■are Members. 

Combined with the encouragement of scientific research, it is intended to appropriate a part 
of (he Funds to deeds of Charity, — a virtue which has ever characterised the Sons of the 

The Design of the Plate which composes tliis Certificate is allegorical of the objects of the 


Israel G. Collins, President. 
Alex. Thompson, First Vice-President. Geo. Bunker, Second Vice-President. 

Freeman Allen, Treasurer. Eliab Fisher, Secretary. 

Joseph D. Fay, Esq. Counsellor. 


Thomas B. Vermilye, President. 
Wm. Hamilton, First Vice-President. Saml. Candler, Second Vice-President. 

Freeman Allen, Treasurer. David S. Ogden, Secretary. 

SiLVANus Miller, Esq. Counsellor. 

-^ry-vx 'V5 - 

'Ly ^ ^ ^ 








This Society was incorporated in the Year eighteen hundred and seventeen, and the benevolence 
and charity, which mark the principles on which it is founded, evince that its Members are 
keenly alive to deeds of beneficence and humanity. The following Extracts from the By- 
Laws will shew the liberality which so emmently distinguishes this Charity. 

" All Members, who by age or sickness or any other cause (except drunkenness or mal- 
eonduct,) are prevented from following the piloting business shall be entitled to the annual sum 
of ^130 payable quarterly. 

" Also, all his Children under fourteen years of age shall be entitled to ^52 per annum, like- 
wise payable quarterly, and in case the Father be rendered incapable by drunkenness or mal- 
conduct, his Children shall receive the yearly allowance notwithstanding. 

" When a Member dies ^50 shall be paid for funeral expences ; the Widow shall be en- 
titled to jg80 per annum, p.iyable quarterly ; all his Children imder fourteen years of age shall 
be entitled to ^50 per annum. 

The Present Officers of the Society are — 

John Minugh, President. 

Israel Navarro, Vice-President. David Mitchell, Treasurer. 


George Kelso, Samuel C Hicks, 

John Henderson, John White, 

James Malcom. 

Peter Sawyer, Secretary. 


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This Society was incorporated in the Year eighteen hundred and seventeen, and the benevolence 
and charity, which mark the principles on which it is founded, evince that its Members are 
keenly alive to deeds of beneficence and humanity. The following Extracts from the By- 
Laws will shew the liberality which so emmently distinguishes this Charity. 

" All Members, who by age or sickness or any other cause (except drunkenness or mal- 
eonduct,) are prevented from following the piloting business shall be entitled to the annual sum 
of 1^150 payable quarterly. 

" Also, all his Children under fourteen years of ase shall be entitled to ^52 per annum, like- 
wise payable quarterly, and in case the Father be rendered incapable by drunkenness or mal- 
conduct, his Children shall receive the yearly allowance notwithstanding. 

" When a Member dies ^50 shall be paid for funeral expences ; the Widow shall be en- 
titled to f,80 per annum, payable quarterly ; all his Children under fourteen years of age shall 
be entitled to ^50 per annum. 

The Present Olficers of the Society are — 

John Minugh, President. 

Israel Navarro, Vice-President. David Mitchell, Treasurer. 


George Kelso, Samuel C Hicks, 

John HENDERsoif, John White, 

James Malcom. 

Peter Sawyer, Secretary. 

W^ ^. fh 



Was founded in the year eighteen hundred and twenty-five for benevolent purposes, voluntiuy 
assistance, and useftil improvements. 

" 1st. Our voluntary aid is to be given in case of an invasion in transporting troops, 
munitions of war, &c. to any post or place in the vicinity of this City, for the benefit of the 
Government. Also in aiding vessels in distress with sails, rigging, cables, anchors, &c. assisting 
vessels that may be on shore ; extinguishing of fires on board ships or vessels lying in the 
stream or along side of piers : the compen.^ation for any of the above services always to be 
left to the Wardens of the Port. Giving information for the prevention of smuggling or any 
iUicit trade. 

" 2nd. Our useful improvements are intended for the benefit of any Members who by their 
ingenuity may bring forward any very superior rowing or sailing boats, or may improve in the 
mode of making oars, &c. ; and who shall for any such improvements be compensated from the 
funds of this Society in a sum not exceeding one hundred dollars nor less than fitly dollars. 

" 3rd. No one shall become a Member of this Society unless he be a citizen of the United 


The following are Officers for the ensuing two years, viz. : — 

Charles Magnus, First Waterman. Albert Cammyer, Second Waterman. 

Corns. Cammyer, Third Waterman Wm. Woods, Fourth Waterman. 

John M'Pherson, Secretary. 




IVMITIE-IHAILl. , TIC TG)IiIO;r,S INHAr 2 : 11825 . 



To the Honorable Richard Riker, Chairman of the Committee of Arrangemeats for cele- 
brating the union of the waters of the Lakes with the Ocean. 

In compUance with your invitation to prepare a detailed account of the Procession on 
the Fourth of November last, I have the honor to subii it the following statement ; it is com- 
piled from Reports that were furnished by the several associations that participated in the 
Celebration, and may be relied upon as accurate. I have generally retained the language of 
the Reports in the description of the various Cars, Stages, Models, Banners, and Decorations, 
that were used on the occasion. 

Having accepted the appointment of Marshal of the day I considered it my first duty to 
ascertain the probable number of persons that would join in the Procession, also the dimen- 
sions of the different Stages, Cars, and Models that were in preparation, and then proceeded, 
in connexion with the Gentlemen whom I had invited to assist me as Aids, to assign to the 
Societies and Bodies that had signified their intention of uniting in the Celebration, their stations 
in the Procession, prescribing the district, designated by the cross-streets, in which they would 
respectively form. A paper specifying these several stations and districts was lodged in the 
the Recorder's Office, in the City Hail, for the inspection and government of the Officers of 


the different Societies. The result of this amingement was tbat the several Associations pro- 
ceded from their respective places of rendezvous, by the nearest cross-street, to their assigned 
stations, with great regularity, and the confusion that was apprehended as the almost 
inevitable consequence of so many and numerous bodies moving from different parts of the 
City to nearly the same point was entirely obviated. These preliminary dispositions having 
been effected, the following General Order was pubhshed. 



New York, November 3, 1825. 

" To-morrow being the day designated for the Celebration by this City, of the completing 
the Erie Canal, the Marshal of the day pubhshes the following Regulations for the Proces- 

" The Procession will be arranged on the West side of Greenwich Street, the right on 
Marketfield Street, North-Easterly side of Canal Street and Westerly side of Broadway, above 
Canal Street. 

" The Societies will form six in front, the interval between the ranks six fset ; it is expected 
that they will assemble by nine o'clock, a. m. in order that they m ty be marched, to their 
respective stations by half-past nine, as it is desirable, that the Procession should be ready by 
ten. A signal gun will announce when the arrangement of the Procession is completed ; three 
guns in quick succession is the signal for the Procession to move. 

" To afford to each Society an opportunity of seeing the whole Procession, the column ivill 
march to, and wheel on the Battery, returning by the East side ot Greenwich Street to Canal 
Street, up Canid Street and Broadway to Broome Street, along Broome Street, the Bowery and 
Chatham Street to Pearl Street, down Pearl Street to the Battery, and along the Battery and 
Broadway to the Park. At the Battery the Honorable the Corporation and their Guests, on 
their return from the Ocean, will join the Procession. 


" The Procpssion will disperse at the Park ; the several Societies as they arrive at that point 
will be marched off by Broiiuw^y and Chalham Street, under the direction of their proper 

" The stations of the several Societies may be ascertained on application being made at the 
Recorder's Office, City Hail, bet>vetn the hours of ten and two, this day. 

" Those Societies which shall not bo in station at ten, a. m. on the day of the Celebration, 
will be marched to the roar of the column. 

"Chiefs of Societies are requested to report, in writing, to the Mar-hal of the day, tlie 
places at which their respective Societies assemble. 

The following gentlemen are appointed by the Marshal of the day to aid him in the execu- 
tion of his duties : — Messrs. Charles King, James J. Jones, Simon V an Wiidvle, and Nicholas- 
Low, Jun. 

AUGUSTUS FLEMING, Marshal of llie Day 

In pursuance o{ this order the Societies, Trades, and Professions, in the order in which 
they are enumerated, appeared at their respective positions by thirty minutes after nine, a. m. 

The ground on which the Procession was ordered to assemble had been previously divided 
into tour districts, designated by the cross streets ; each district was placed under the superin- 
tendence of one of the aids, who had instructions to regidate the different Societies and Bodies 
that formed therein, and these several Societies constituted his division. Major Low had in 
charge the district between the Battery and Liberty Street, comprehending the First Division ; 
Mr. Van Winkle the district between Liberty Street and Chambers Street, comprehending the 
Second Division ; Colonel King the district between Chambers Street and Beach Street, compre- 
hending the Third Division ; and Colonel Jones the district extending from Beach Street along 
Greenwich and Canal Streets to Broadway, comprehending the Fourth Division. 



By twenty-fire minutes past ten o'clock, a. m. the aids had reported that their divisions were 
formed ; directions were tlicn given to close in column. At forty-five minutes past ten o'clock 
the signal gun announced that the Procession was ready to move. The right, or leading division 
was now on Marketfield Street, the whole (excepting the Butchers, who were on horseback, and 
formed four in front,) were in the prescribed order, extending along Greenwich and Canal 
Streets to Chapel Street, where the rear rested, a distance exceeding one mile and a half. 

At fifty minutes past ten o'clock the second signal was fired, and the Procession moved 
in the following order : — 

TRUMPETERS, (Mounted.) 

Augustus Fleming, Marshal of the day. 


Charles King, Simon Van Winkle, 

James J. Jones, Nicholas Low, Jun. 

All mounted, being uniformly dressed, wearing white satin collar and rosette, and carrying a 

short white baton, tipped with gold. 

This excellent band consisted of first rate artists ; it was furnished by the Honorable the Cor- 
poration, and placed under the direction of the Marshal of the day. During the Procession 
they played two beautiful marches that were composed expressly for the occasion. 


No 1. 


Michael Flov, Marshal. 

B\NNER of blue silk, borne by William Curr, supported by Alexander Smith and William 
Wilson : a fine display of the principal causes and effects of vegetation exhibited. In the upper 
part the Sun represented diffusing his cheering rays over the verdant landscape below, where 
rocks, cascades, fruits, trees, &c. displayed a lively representation of some of the most interest- 
ing scenes with which the memorable events of the day were intimately connected. (This 
Banner was painted by Mr. Thomas Grenell, of this City. 


Sixty-five Members of this Society were marshalled by Michael Floy ; they were uniformly 
dressed in blue coats and pantaloons and white vest, wearing, as the ancient badge of their 
active employment blue aprons, and having elegant bunches of flowers on the left breast of their 
coats. The standard-bearer and supporters wore, in addition, garlands of flowers round their hatg. 

William Wilsos, Thomas Hogg, 

Michael Flov. 
Delegates to confer n'ilh the Corporation. 
Doctor Hosack, Judge Van Ness. 

No. 2. 


A Band of Music 

Isaac Hoogkerk, Marshal of the Society, (Mounted.) 

A Small Banner, bearing the inscription " The Journeymen Tailors' Society." The Pre- 
sident and Secretary of the Society followed, wearing sashes to designate them. 

A Large Flag ; Adam and Eve represented standing in the garden under the tree — the 
Inscription " United we are." Next in the Procession was a Banner three feet square ; a Native 
represented in the act of shearing a sheep — Inscription '• The lamb for thy clothing ;" farther 
towards the rear another Banner of like size, on which is represented a Native receiving a cloak 
— the Inscription " Naked was I and ye clothed me." 

One hundred and eighty Members of this Society appeared in the prescribed order, each 
wearing a collar of white satin with a green rosette attached to the bottom, and an impression of 
the badge of the Society on the left breast. 

John H. Fargie, President. 
James D. Wilson, Secretary. 
Delegates to confer zi'ith the Corporation. 
Lansing L. Blake, John H. Fargie. 

No. X 

No Report. 

Delegates to conjer with the Corporation. 
John H. Remsen, William Dumont. 

No. 4. 
Charles Mills, Peter Browx. 

Standard — The Bakers' Arms ; on a shield three sheaves of wheat, an arm between two 
anchors, issuing from the clouds, holding a balance between two of the sheaves and over the 
third. Crest — two arms, issuing out of clouds, holding in their hands a chaplet of wheat. Sup- 
porters — two stags, each gorged with a chaplet of wheat. Motlo — " Praise God for all." The 
original of the Standard was presented by Edward II. a. d. 1307, to the Incorporated Company 
of Bakers, in London. 

One hundred and twenty-five Members of this Society appeared, with a band of music ; they 
were uniibrmly dressed in blue coats, white pantaloons, white hats, and wore the badge of their 

Basil Dvkes, President. 

Walter Hill, Vice-President. 


John Wilson, Robert M'Gee. 

John Debaun, Treasurer. 

James Chamberlain, Secretary. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 

John Sinclair, Barnard Savage. 






,,u^ l^l•:^'K^•/^/, , 'Q^>\ 


No 5. 

James Seguine, Marshd. 

Banner, seven {eet by eight, borne in front of the Society by J. Willet ; Commerce, 
Industry, and Trade represnoted, encircled by a white oak branch. Motto, " Love as Brethren." 

A Stage, on which the implements of the trade were tastefully arranged, drawn by three 
horses ; on the stage were two men anti a boy at work, who completed a sixty and a forty 
gallon cask during the Procession. Above them was displayed the identical banner that was used 
by the Coopers in the Federal Procession in Seventeen hundred and eighty-eight ; this banner 
is sis by seven feet — on the upper part the Union is represented ; in the middle the Arms of 
the State of New York ; below, the Cooper's Arms. Motto — '• Love as Brethren." 

One hundred and four Members of the Society followed in order. The rear wa.s closed by 
Mr. Tliomas Shorland, bearing a banner three feet by four on which was inscribed "N. Y. 
Journeyman Cooper's Society." 

Delegates to confer mt'th the Corporation. 
James Segvine, David W. Aki.vs. 

No 6. 


All on horseback, formed four in front. 
Thomas Gibbons, Marshal. 
Lawrence Wiseburn, John Trigler, 

John Perrin, Daniel Spader. 

Two Trumpeters, (Mounted.) 



A Car, handsomely decorated with laurel drawn by four horses ; on the car a farmer repre- 
sented with his stock, consisting of a live calf and several sheep ; in front of the car two boys, in 
appropriate dresses, supported a banner, exhibiting on one side the emblems of the profession — 
a knife and steel crossed ; above, the poll-axe ; below, on one side the saw, on the other the 
chopper, in the centre an ox and sheep. Inscription — " We preserve by destroying." On the 
reverse a pastoral scene, flocks and herds grazing, the plough, harrow, and other implements of 
husbandry, grain, &c. &c. Inscription — " Agricultuie our Nation's wealth." 

Twenty boys followed the Car ; they were dressed in white frocks, and carried in their 
hands the different implements of the trade. A white Standard, inscribe'! " The Butcher's 
Benevolent Society," followed by Fifty of the profession, in white aprons and check sleeves, 
mounted on grey horses. One hundred in similar dress, on bay horses, followed these. Next a 
Large Car, drawn by six horses ; on a platform in the centre was erected a stall at which a hand- 
some white ox was feeding ; the ends of the platform were enclosed by white palisades and 
sodded, intended to represent a field and shrubbery, sheep feeding, &c. Another pahsaded 
platform surmounted the stage, in which was placed the full form of an ox, handsomely pre- 
pared for the occasion, dressed with ribbons and other appropriate embellishments, attended by 
four boys, in white frocks, decorated with ribbons ; the whole intended to represent the process 
of grazing and feeding, until the animal is prepared for tiie knife. 

One hundred and fifty of the profession, dressed as before, with four Standards, at equal 
distances, followed on black horses ; on the first Standard a Heart is represented, — Inscription, 
"Is devoted to our Country." On the second the form of an Ox-head, — Inscription, 
" Liberty is our head;" on the third the figure of a Steak, — Inscription, " To all we divide a 
part ;" on the fourth are inscribed the words " Internal Improvements are chains to strengthen 
the Union of the States." 


Lawrence Wiseburn, President. 
John Perrin, Vice-President. 
John Graff, Treasurer. Thomas Jeremiah, Secretary. 

Christian H. Kartell, Assistant Secretary. 

Ernest Fink, 
Jacob Aims, 

Thomas Gibbons, 
Thomas Jeremiah, 
Albert Fisher, 
John Trigler, 
Joseph Blackwell, 
Barth. Granger, 
Eliphalet Wheeler, 
Lawrence Wiseburn, 
Walter Durbrow, 
Fred. Hawes, 
Robert Tier, 
Philip Luff, Jun. 



Thomas Gibbons, 
James Reeves, 
John Trigler. 
Committee of Arrangements. 

Christ. Harriett, 
Elias Deforest, 
John Varick, 
James Simonson, 
John Perrin, 
Thomas Syberts, 
Jacob Ridabock. 
Jacob Syler, 
James Weeden, 
Daniel Spader, 
John Wallace, 
Joseph Jacots. 

Delegates to confer "Joith the Corporation. 
^4LTER Durbrow, John Perrin. 



William M' Alpine, Marshal. 

John E. Cammayer, 
William M'Docgall, 

John Enock, 
John Haman, 

John H. Bailev. 


The President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer of the Society. 

The Tanners and Curriers of Newark, with tlieir Standard ; a Tanner and Currier 
i-epresented thereon in their working dress ; in the centre a Heart, supported by an oak tree, 
upon which were drawings of a currying knife and flesher ; above, on the tree, a bulls' head : 
the Sun just rising. Motto — " By Union we rise to splentlaur." 

The Tanners of New York. — Banner of blue silk three feet square, a gilded flesher in 
the centre, and the word " Tanners" in letters of gold : on tlie top of the staff a gilded ox, in 

The Curriers. — Banner three feet square the word '• Curriers," in letters of gold and a 
correct representation of a patent knife ; on the top of the st;iff was placed a gilded horse. 

A Stage, drawn by four handsome horses ; on the front of the Stage was displayed the 
Banner which was carried by the trade in the Procession of Seventeen hundred and eighty- 
eight, on the occasion of the adoption of the Federal Constitution This Banner is of blue silk; 
a flesher and currying knife in the middle. Crest — a bulls' head horned. Supporters — on the 
right side a Tanner in his frock and trowsers, holding in liis right hand a skimmer ; on the left 
side a Currier, in his working dress, apron turned up, holding in his left hand a currying knife : 
the Sun rising from beneath the National Flag. Motto — the same as on the first Standard : 
behind all, an oak tree. On the fore part of the Stage two Tanners, coats off and sleeves rolled 
up, at work setting sole leather ; they wore blue vests and pantaloons, with blue cassimere 
aprons, bound with white silk. In the rear one Currier shaving upper or neat's leather, one 
whitening calf skins, one shaving goat skins, and one finishing calf skins. Between the Tanners 
and Curriers hung the leather finished. Curriers dress similar to that of the Tanners. 

The Grand Standard. — Front same as the Standard first described, with the exception 
that the Sun is at meridian, and a beautiful landscape in the back ground. On the reverse full 
length figures of a Morocco Dresser and a Skinner ; the Morocco Finisher with sleeves rolled 
up, buff vest, blue pantaloons, green apron ; the right arm, with roller in hand, resting on a heart, 
the left carelessly hanging by his side ; the Skinner, with sleeves rolled up, buff vest and pan- 
taloons, white apron, moon knife in right hand, left arm carelessly leaning on a heart ; the 
heart supported by a mahogany tree, bearing in the centre the hook and plunger crossed ; in 


th° intermediate spacs, a funnel at top, a pair of sheers below ; on the right, a sleeker ; and on 
tb.- left a glass roller. Aoove (he heart, against the trunk of the tree in front, a deers head; 
on the right a rams head, and on the- left a goats head. A handsome hindscape in the distance, 
shumac growing in he Iges; the Sun just rising. Motto — "Industry the support of our Nation." 
The staff surmounted hy .i gilded eagle. 

A Full Band of Musicians. 

The Skinners, with their Banner of blue silk, three feet square ; a moon knife in the centre, 
and the word " Sidnners," in letters of gold. A golden ram in miniature on the top. 

A St\ge, drawn by four fine hors-'s. — On the fore part two Morocco Finishers finishing 
skins of vari)us colours, their sleeves rolled, wearing white vests, pantwloons, and stockings, 
and black morocco pumps In the centre of (he Stage, a Skinner pulling wool ; on the right, a 
Kid Skin Dresser finishing skins of every colour ; on the left, an Od Leather Dresser finishing- 
glove leather. 

The Morocco, with their Hnnner of Hw ?\\k. three feet square ; in the centre a 
gilded sleeker ; the words " Morocco Dressers," iu letters of gold ; on the top a gilded goat in 

Three hundred and thirteen persons, wearing Badges emblematical of the Trade, appeared 
in the Procession. 

The Mai-shal wore a blue scarf, red rosette on the right breast, and sash of figured lute- 

The Assistant Marshals were similarly dressed, carrying in addition maple rods five feet 
long, trimmed with blue ribbon. 

Charles Revnolds, President ; 
Patrick Quirk, Vice-President ; 
IIenrv Tappajt, Secretary ; Benj. Bradv, Treasurer ; 

Wore sashes of lutestring, two roses on each, in addition to the badges emblematical of the Trade. 



Delegates to confer tcith the Corporation. 
Benjamin Brady. WiLtiAM M'DoDOALt. 

No. 8. 


James Lennon, Marcus Rimball. 

The President, Treasurer, aiid Secretary of the Society. 

The President carried a hammer, curiously wrought, of ebony, curled maple, and ivory, 
Hnd a scroll with the style of the Society — " Cordwainers of New York " On his right, the 
Treasurer, carrying a gilt key ; on his left, the Secretary, carrying a gilt pen. 

A Standard six feet square, of blue silk, yellow fringe and tsissels, borne by James Lawler, 
wearing a blue sash ; his Supporters decorated with blue collars and rosettes. The Standard 
displayed the Cordwainers' Arms, viz. three goats heads in a shield, supported by Journeymen in 
working dress ; one on the right side, holding in his right hand a woman's shoe ; the other on 
the left side, holding a man's boot, representing the two branches of the trade. Crest — A 
segment of a globe, surmounted by an eagle in a brilliant glory, holding in his talons a scroll 
with the words "Liberty and Independence." Over the whole the Motto — "United we stand, 
Divided we fall ;" underneath, " Cordwainers of the City of New York." The whole subject 
included within an oak wreath. 

The Marshals were mounted, having an Assistant on foot on each flank of the column. 

Four hundred and fifty Employers and Journeymen, with blue badges bearing the Arms of 
the Trade, appeared on the occasion, having a Band of Music in the centre. Three small 
Banners, with appropriate devices, were placed at equal distances in the Procession. In the 
rear Mr. Daniel Reeder, bearing a Standard, displaying the Anns in a shield. Supporters ; on the 
right side a Cordwainer in working dress, at his feet, and bene.ith the shield, the cornucopias ; 
on the left side, a female figure in a white dress and purple robe, holding in her left hand a 


Scroll with the words — " Industry rewarded in America ;" oak boughs under her feet. Crest-^ 
a goats head in a cloud, surrounded by golden rays, in which appears the cherub Liberty in the 
act of crovvning the male figure with a civic wreath. Motto, over the whole — " Union is our 
ttrength." Motto underneath — The same as on the first Standard. 

The Vice-President closed, carrying a hammer and scroll, with the words " Cordwainers of 
New York." 

The President and Vice-President wore blue sashes fringed with gold, and ornamented with 
gold stars. The Treasurer and Secretary wore blue collars and rosettes. The Standard 
Bearers wore blue sashes ; their Supporters blue collars, 

Alexander Waddv, President of the day, 

Nicholas M. Slidell, V'ice-President. 

Abraham Merrill, Treasurer. Thos. Baker, Secretary. 

Matthew Armstrong, Abraham Becker, 

Wearing blue collars and rosettes. 
Delegates to confer tfith the Corporation. 
Abraham Merrill, Simon Van Winkle. 

No. 9. 


Reuben Munson, Marshal. 
John Sprowles, John Palmer. 

A Car, appropriately arranged, drawn by four bay horses. A miniature Workshop repre- 
sented, enclosed within a railing twenty inches high. In the Workshop seven of the Trade, 
under the din^ction of Homer Hurd, worked the most approved mdchine. During the 
Procession th y -n* in..nif o.ureH, vv^ finisbnd fifty dozen of shtll md horn combs, which 
they disinbuicu lo lae Ladies as the Car moved along. On the front of the Car was a permanent 


standard, bearing a Banner of blue silk, on which was painted an elephant, a turtle, and a hul- 
locks' head. The B,iq[i jr wns supported by Masters Geo. VV. B. Gcdney, and Huram Betts, jun. 
each wearing sashes of bhie ligured silk. 

Eighty persons, M.isters, Journeymen, and Apprentices of the trade appeared in the Pro- 
cession, wearing on the loft lirenst a badge representing tiie turtle, elephant, and bullocks' head. 
Motto, underneath — " By these we live." 

The Marshal wore a sash of pile red figured silk ; the other Officers wore sashes of blue 
figured silk. The Captain of tlie Car wore a blue ribbon sash, with a large ornamented rose 
on the breast. 

Robert Gednev, President. 
William L. Bunnows, Secretary. 

No. 10. 


.losEPH JnEL, Marshal ; 

Mounted on a white charger : Dress, crimson sash, buff rosetto on the shoulder, military 

hat and plume. 

Grand Sta\d.4Rd. — Saint Clement represented at full length, dressed in a flowing purple 
robe. Inscription — " St. Clement. — Hats invented at Paris in the year 1404.'" On the top of 
the Standard the American Eagle. Tlie Standard Bearer wore uhite sash, red rose on the 
shoulder, military hat and plume. Two supporters similarly dressed. 

The President, Vice-President, and Secretary, wore white satin sashes, red rose on the 
right shoulder. 

Finance Committee. — Purple sashes round the shoulders, a white rose suspended at the 

A Fill Band of Music, in uniform, playing appropriate airs and marches. 


A Stage drawn by six horses. Postillions in uniform. — On this IVfachine was exhibited a great 
display of the Art and Mystery of Hat Manufacturing. On the centre of the Stiigo was placed 
a lai-ge lead kettle, seven planks fastened to its curve, the whole forming a circular battery. — 
Dress of the Flankers, black waistcoat, white pantdoons, white stockings, blue caps, white aprons, 
sle ves rolled up. On the front, two hurdles, men bowing the finest fur ; Dress, the same as the 
Pl.inkers. On the rear part, four finishing benches, men finishing ; Dtcss, the same iis 
the Phmkers, with the exception of black aprons. Two Apprentices, and a Foreman to 
superintend and inspect the work ; Dress, the same as the Plankers. In front of the Stage a 
St ind ird and two Supporters ; Standard Bearer, white s;ush, red rose, military hat and plume ; 
Supporters, white sash, red rose. The Stage was decorated with various skins, &c. emblematic 
of the trade. 

Grand Standard, with two Supporters. Inscription — " The State of New York and the 
Grand Canid." Standard Beiirer and Supporters ; Dress, the s;unc as the Plankers. 

First Division of Hattf.ks, in the prescribed order, blue badges impressed with a hat, and 
the date of the Celebration worn on the lapel of the coat. 

Twenty-four of the youngest .\pprentices, representing the States of the Union, pre- 
ceeded by a Standard and two Supporters ; Stand,u-d Bearer Master Thomas Wallace ; Dress, 
purple sash, white rose, military h it and plume ; Supporters, purple sash, white rose. Each 
boy wore a blue round jacket, white vest, white pant;doons and stockings, blnck hats, blue 
sash over the right shoulder ; a miniature bow under the left arm, a bow pin in the right 

Second Division of Hatters, the same as the First Division, preceded by two Standards, 
one representing General Washington, " The Father of his Country ;" the other Governor 
Clinton, " The Benefactor of his Country." Standard Bearers, purple sash, white rose. 

Two Elderly Employers and Two Elderly Journeymen, wearing blue sash and white 
rose, seated in the La Fayette Barouche, drawn by four grey horses, closed the rear of the 
Hatters' Society. 




Eighteen Banners, one j'nrd square, to represent the Waters which unite in the Grand 
Canal, and also the principal Cities and Towns extending from the Ocean to Michigan, viz. ; — 
" Lake Superior," " Lake Huron," " Lake Michigan," " Lake Erie," " Lake ChamplHin," 
"Lake Cayuga," " Lake Seneca," " Lake Oneida," " Lalie Skaneateles," '-Hudson Hiver," 
"Atlantic," " Detroit," "Buffalo," " Lockport," " Utica," " Little Falls," "Albany," "New 
York." These Banners were placed at equal distances in the Procession. 

Master Hatfield, the son of a Hatter, was superbly dressed. He carried a Banner with 
these lines inscribed (hereon — 

" Rocks and hills can't now restrain, 
" Erie's waters from the Main." 

Twelve Assistants, on foot, aided the Marshal of the Society in his duties ; they wore blue 
sashes, carrying white rods, eight feet long, tipped with a miniature hat. 

Five hundred and fifty Hatters appeared in the Procession. 

Joseph Juel, 
John Hurley, 
James Van Dvne, 
Walter Mead, 
Jacob Hatfield, 
Elisha Bloomer, 


Elisha Bloomer, 

Joseph Brewster, President. 

Henry Costar, Vice-President. 
John Hurley, Secretary. 
Committee of Arrangements. 

Thomas Haynes, Jun, 
Elnatha.n Tyler, 


• Babcock, 

Henry Costar, 
John Addy, 
Thomas G. Potter. 

Finance Committee, 

Thomas G. Potter, 

J. D. Wilson. 
Delegates to confer tuith the Corporation. 

John Ford, Jun. 

Charles Harris. 


No. 11. 
Charles T. Pjerso-v, Marshal. 

Peter, Helmes, Robfrt Cochran. 

The Delegates appointed to confer with the Honorable the Corporation. 
Presjde.nt and Vice-President, 
Treasurer and Secretarv. 

Banner. — Trowel in hand. Inscription — "Journeymen Masons' Society,'" followed by 
thirty of the trade. 

Grand Standard, seven feet square. — Masons'Arnis, borne by J. Whitlock, supported b\ 
Samuel Halsey, and Charles Stuart. Followed as above. 

Banner. — The Genius of Liberty. Followed as above. 

Banner. — The Foundation of a Building represented. Followed as above. 

Banner. — An Unfinished Building. Followed .is before. 

Banner. — \ Finished Building. Followed as before. 

Banner. — A Sheaf of Wheat. Inscription — '• Our Labour is Rewarded." 

Two hundred and twenty Members of this Society appeared in the prescribed Order ; the 
badge worn by them represented an unfinished arch, a pyramid, and a trowel in hand. 

David Riley, President. 

Jacob Winans, Vice-President. 

Nathaniel Norris, Treasurer. 

Chas. Seymour, Secretary. 

Delegates to confer with the CorporatioH, 
Jefferson Berrian, George Riley. 


No. 12. 

Joseph Webb, Marshul. 

The President and Secretarv, 
The first carrying the Constitution, the second a gilt pen. 

Banner, six feet by four, of dark bule silk, gold lace border and deep yellow silk fringe ; on 
the front two leopards coming from under a crest, beneath which is the Society's Motto — " Amor 
et obedientia," and over their heads, written on a golden ribbon," House Painters' Society ;" on 
the reverse a golden piillet with a number of pencils, over which, in a golden ribbon, is written 
" The useful and agreeable." 

The Three Trustees, each carrying a large golden key. 

A Boy, nine years old, carrying a miniature ladder, sides of mahog.any, rungs of satin wood; 
he wore red velvet collar, badge, and rosette : on his right and left a Boy of the same age, each 
carrying a paint-brush, tastefully ornamented with ribbons of various colours. 

One hundred and thirty nine of the trade appeared, unitbrmly dressed in blue coats and 
white pantaloons, and wearing the Badge of the Society. A white silk Flag, edged with crimson 
fringe, was stationed midway between the front and rear, on either side of which was written on 
tablets of gold, " House Piiinters' Society, instituted Aprd, 1825." 

The President wore a red velvet collar, on which was placed the badge of the Society, and 
a variegated rosette in front ; he also wore a light blue silk sash. The Secretary wore a light 
blue silk ribbon round the neck, with badge and blue rosette, also sash of blue silk, trimmed with 
white silk fringe. The Standard Bearer wore a light blue silk scarf. The Trustees wore 
decorations similar to those of the Secretary. 

John Marsh, President. 
SiMow Clankon, Secretary. 


NATHANfEL L. AsTov, Geoege T. Beaket, 

Andrew Civill. 
Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
Richard H. Staats, William Davis. 

No. 13. 

Edward Riley. Patrick Timmons, 

David Christie. 

President and Vice-President of the Journeymen Stone Cutters. 
Treasurer and Secretary of the Journeymen Stone Cutters. 

The Grand Standard. — An ancient stone Temple represented entire. Inscription — " The 
Work of Art and Industry." 

President and Vice-President of the Mister Stone Cutters. 
Treasurer and Secretary of the Master Stone Cutters. 

The Masters, bearing a blue Banner, with a gilt star in the centre. 

The Journeymen Stone Cutters bearing in their ranks two Banners, one of white, th* 
other of blue silk, on both of which were represented the Arms of the Trade, 

One hundred and eighty of the Trade appeared, uniformly dressed, wearing white satin 
aprons trimmed with blue ribbon, with devices emblematical of the business in the centre ; on 
the left breast a badge — the Arms of the Trade. 

The Steward of the Society directed an excellent Band of Musicians ; tiiey alao wore the 

badge of the Society. 



The Officers wore over the right shoulder large white satin sashes trimmed on the edge 
with blue fringe ; on the front the Arms of the Trade handsomely gilt : also broad blue satin 
collars and rosettes. 

The Presidents carried each a gilt mallot in his hand. 
The Treasurers carried each a gilt koy. 
The Secretaries carried each a gill pen. 


Abraham Deb^dn, President. 

Alexander Christie, Vice-President. 

Alexander Gray, Treasurer. Wm. Morrow, Secretary. 

Edward Colgate, Steward. 

Alexander Masterson, President. 
Francis Kain, Vice-President. 
Henry Wooldridge, Treasurer. John Moffat, Secretary. 

Committee of Arrangements. 
Alexander Grav, Robert Smith. 



Marshals of Masters. 
Alexander Welsh, Daniel Lee. 


Marshals of Juurncijmcn. 

R. D. Hdtchings, 

A Boy, wearing a straw-coloured sash, carried a Banner of blue silk. Motto — " Support the 
Chair," — a compliment to the Governor of the State. The Banner was surmounted by a small 
curled maple chair, and supported by the two Marshals of the Master Chairmakers' Society, 
having ivhite staves, gilt b;ills, blue ribbons, blue stidls ,'ind tlie badge of the Society. 

The Grand Standard of the Societv. — Front a female figure, with cornucopise and fruit 
fit her feet, emblemfitic of Peace and Plenty, resting upon a handsome modelled fancy chair, 
with one hand, and pointing to the chair with the other; in the distance a ship and other em- 
blems of commerce. Motto, — " By these we thrive." On the reverse the Chairmakers' Arms. 
Motto, — " Rest for the Weary." 

The Master Chair Makers, wearing the badge of the Society. In the centre a Roy bear- 
ing a Banner of blue silk. Inscription, — " Internal Navigation," surmouuled by a small rose- 
wood Chair, gilt and bronzed. 

Eight Boys, with straw-coloured sashes, carried a large gilt eagle, with a miniature chair in 
his beak. 

Marshals of the Journevmens' Society, with staves and badges the same as the ^Vsfers' 
Society, followed by the Journeymen wearing the badge of the Society. In the centre a 'oy 
bearing a Banner of blue silk, surmounted by a small rosewood chair, gilt ;md bronzed. Motto, 
— " Free Trade." 

An Eagle, gilt and bronzed, carried by a Boy, wearing straw-coloured sash and badge of the 

The Apprentices,' wearing the Society's badge. In the centre a Boy bearins; a Banner 
of blue silk, surmounted by a small curled maple chiir, gilt and bronzed Motto, — ' Liberty 
and Peace." The badge worn by the Societies 'vas stra^v-coloured ribbon ivith a fanc\ chair, 
encircled by an appropriate wreath. Motto — •' Rest for the Weary." Two hundred of the 
Trade appeared in the Procession. 


Masters' Society. 

J. K. CowpERTHWAiTE, President. 

G. W. Skellorn, Vice-President. 

E. A. Valentine, Secretary, P. T. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 


Journeymens'' Society. 
Cyrus Baldwin, President. 
Delegates to confer ■mth the Corporation. 
Ctrfs Baldwin. J. Commerford. 

No. 1&. 

The President, 
' Supported by the Treasurer on the right, by the Secretary on the left. 

The Grand Standard, representing a Stone-ware Kiln, in full blaze, bearing the following 
Inscription — 

" By the power of fire alone, 

" The fragile clay is turned to stone." 

The rear was closed by a Banner representing a Turner in the act of finishing a jar. In- 
scription — " The Potter hath power over the Clay." 

Forty Members of the Society appeared in the Procession. The President wore a badge 
of crimson silk ; the Treasurer and Secretary badges of blue silk, edged with red. 

Clarkson Crolius, Jun, President. 
John H. Giffing, Treasurer. Will. A. Haggerty, Secretary. 


No. 16. 

Hexry Storms, Marshal. 
Two Trumpeters, (in lull uniform.) 

A White Charoer, fully caparisoned, led by two black grooms in rich Moorish dress ; the 
seat of the saddle was of crimson velvet, the skirts and flaps of fawn colour and green velvet, the 
whole superbly ornamented ; the skirts exhibited the Crest of the State of New York. The holster 
caps, housing, and breast-plate were made of tiger-skin richly bound with gold lace, and trimmed 
with gold fringe ; on the point of the breast-plate was an excellent representation of a tigers 
he id. The bridle, iic. were equally rich and beautiful with the other parts of the equipments, 
all of which were m;uiufactured by Messrs. Osborne and Storms who, although rivals in trade, 
cordiidly united in producing a specimen of their ait, every way worthy of the occasion. 

(The Saddle described above has been sold to a Gentleman of Virginia for two hundred 


Two Cream-coloured Hor<!ES, neatly fitted with a Ladys' and a Gentlemans' saddle of the 
present lashion, led by grooms in rich Moorish diess. 

A Pair of Grev Horses, with an elegant set of chariot harness, led by grooms in JMoorish 

The Marshal and Chairman of the Society wore mazarine blue sashes and badges fastened 
on with crimson rosettes and silver stars. 

The Grand Standard. — The Saddlers' Arms ; — in a blue shield, a cheveron and three saddles 
in gold. Supporters, two spirited white horses, rampant. Crest — a fully caparisoned horse at a 
stand. Motto — "Our trust is in God." On the reverse, in a picturesque vignette, painted 
by Grenell, is the representation of an aqueduct, lock, and canal-boat. Motto — " 'Tig 

Committee of Arrangements and Secretary, wearing blue sashes. 

The Employers. 

A Banner bearing the likeness of his Excellency De Witt Clinton. Motto — " Honour to 
him to whom Honour is due." 

Between the Divisions of this Associations were Flags bearing the names of the acting 
Canal Commissioners in the following order — "Stephen Van Rensselaer," "Seymour," 
" Bouck," " Young." 

A HoBBv Horse closed the rear ; it was borne by eight Apprentices, four alternately •, 
they wore blue sashes. 

Two hundred and forty Members of tliis Association walked in the Procession. 

Saml. Osborne, Chairman. 
John G. Haight, Secretary. 
Committee of Arrangements. 
Henry Storms, William H. Miller, 

Samuel Osborne, Ralph James, 

William A. Kiley, Asa Crosby, 

Hugh Murray. 
Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
Henry Storms, Samuel Osborne. 

No. 17. 

Isaac Webb, Marshal. 

The Grand Banner of the Association. — Two female figures representing the Genius of 
America and the Genius of Liberty. On the reverse a Ship in frame. Motto—" Commerce is 
our Strength." The Banner was supported by three Members on each side. 


A Model of a Ship of the Lixe in her cradle, in a state ready for launching, drawn on 
trucks by eight horses. The Ship was appropriately decorated with colours, ensign, jack, and 
pennant ; name in her stern "Governor Tompkins." The Society consisting of four hundred 
Members, followed in the prescribed order. At intervals throughout the Procession were dis- 
persed Banners, bearing the following Inscriptions, in the order in which they are arranged. 

Naval Architecture. 






























'rade and Sailors Ri 


"Don't give up the Ship."' 

The beautifiil miniature Line of Battle Ship was built, immediatply after the late war, by the 
Union Society of Shipwrights and Caulkers in connexion with volunteer Blacksmiths, Joiners, 
Carvers, Blockmakers, Painters and Glaziers, Plumbers, Riggers, &c. under the superintendence 
of Henry Eckford. She is constructed of the best materials and in the best manner, completely 
finished, and ready to receive her spars and rigging. Her extreme length is thirty-seven feet, 
and she is in every respect of corresponding dimensions. She had on this occasion a Com- 
modore, Othcers, and Crew, consisting of twenty boys aged from three to nine years. 

Isaac Webb, Presidenl. 

Edward Gross, Vice-President. 

Nicholas Vincent, Treasurer. John Lozier, Secretary. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
Isaac Webb, John Lozier. 


No 18. 

John Mount, Marsh;J. 

President and Vice-President, wearing blue sashes. 

Standard of the Association, borne by William E. Chambers. — A Boat-shop represented ; 
a boat in frame, oars, rudders. The Ocean — a boat sailing; adistunt view of mountains. On the 
reverse a landscape in which roads, trees, and rugged scenery are represented ; a section- of 
the Canal, with junction locks — a boat arrived about to descend in the lock, below the level of 
the landscipe. 

A Clinch-work Boat, five feet in length, decorated with ribbons and a silk ensign, sup- 
ported bj four Apprentices. 

Committee of Arrangements, wearing blue scarfs. 

A Large Car, drawn by four horses. — A Boat-shop represented, with benches, vices, tool- 
chest, saw bench, &c. A steam-stove, with fire-place and chimney ; the process of steaming 
plank performed. George Whitfield, as Master Workman, assisted by Michael Tuckerman and 
Robert Carpenter, employed in budding two boats. 

Employers and Journeymen, in the prescribed order. 

The wherry Aubora Borealis, of p.legant workmanship, twenty-five feet long, built in this 
City, decorated with a Bannar, bearing in the centre a saw and adze crossed. Motto — "Speed, 
Strength, and Truth united." The wherry was drawn by a pony. 

Banner. — The Ark represented floating on the waters. Motto — "Safety in the Ark 

The elegant boat Whitehall that won the race, May 20, 1825, on a carriage drawn by two 
iiorses, attended by the Whitehall Watermen. (A further description in their report.) 

A Clinch-work Boat, seven feet in length, sillc ensigns, six oars extended in the row locks ; 
she was supported by four Apprentices. 

Apprentices in the prescribed order. 

Eighty Members of this Association appeared in the Procession. 

John' Shepherd, Jun. President. 

Edward Delamontaigne, Vice-President. 

John Buckmaster, Treasurer. 

Delegates to confer laith the Corporation. 

D. M'Cartee, Geo. Whitfield. 

No. 19. 


George Howard, Principal. 

On the debarking of the Aquatic Expedition from Sandy Hook, the Watermen fell info the 
Procession and were marshalled with the Boat-builders Association ; they were preceded by the 
beautiful-boat Whitehall (which won the great race on May 20, 1825,) mounted on a car 
drawn by a pair of black horses ; her decorations consisted of the prize flag won at the race, 
mounted in the form of a lug sail, the United States ensign at her stern, and .at h< r bow a flag, 
on one side of which, in a constellation of stars, was represented the victory of the boat Ame- 
rican Star over the British boat Dart ; on the reverse, the victory of the Whitehall. The 
boat is of most exquisite workmanship and was built by Messrs. Montaignies, of this City. Fol- 
lowing the boat were the fathers of three of the victors in the race, viz. William Cammeyer and 
Robert Robins. Master John Miynes, the cockswain of the Whitehall, bore the triumphal 
flag of the Knickerbocker Club. 

Forty Members of this Association appeared in their appropriate dress. 


A salute of tweaty-five guns under the direction of Richard Robins was fired from the 
Whitehall Dock, as the Fleet departed for the Ocean, and a like salute on ite return. 

Delegate to confer with the Corporation. 
George Howard. 

No. 20. 

Thomas Day, Marshal. 

Gideon Castang, William C. B. Simms. 

A Stage, drawn by four horses, the national colours displayed in front and rear ; on the 
Stage was represented the process of rope-making, several p rsons being employed on two 
ropes and a cable during the Procession ; a quantity of yarn was also spun. Under a Canopy, 
on which were inscribed the words " We Honour Old Age," were seated John D ly and David 
Johnson, the two oldest men of the trade. The lower part of the Stage was hung with painted 
canvas, bearing these words — 

" Our hemp is good, our cordage neat, 
" We will supply the American fleet." 

Next, their Banner. — An Eagle, with extended wings above ; in the centre Justice, witii 
the balance in one hand, in the other the sword, point to the ground ; on each side the several 
emblems of the Trade, part of a Canal, and a port with two ships at anchor ; beneath, a rope- 
\v;dk, in full operation. Motto — " Although we go Backwards, still we Advance." Idi a.SeroU 
below, " Ropemakers' Benevolent Society." 

Two other Banners, bearing the Arms of the State, with appropriate Mottos, and two 
smaller Banners inscribed " Ropemakers' BeneToleat Association," were carried at equal inter- 
vals in the Procession. 


One htindred and thirty-two of this Trade appeared, provided with a good Band of Music ; 
they wore, neatly arranged round the body, a piece of ike best Manilla heujp weii dressed, and 
a badge of the order on the left breast. 

The Marshal and his Assistants wore blue silk scarfs, and a badge of their order on their left 
breast ; they also wore a badge on their right breast, which represented the union of the waters 
of the Lakes with the Ocean. 


Delegates to confer rvith the Corporatii 

Wm. C. B. Simms. 

No. 21. 

J. Russell, 
B. Burnett, 
H. Benedict, 

J. C. Vermilye, Marshal. 

S. G. Seger, 


•T. A. Chapple. 

The Readers of the above Institution assembled at their Library, on the morning of the 
Celebration, when an appropriate address was read by Master B. Burnett, after which the Pro- 
cession was formed, the Library Committee in front, followed by two hundred Readers, bearing 
Standards and miniature specimens of workmanship in the following order. 

The Standard of the "General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen," tb'r'^'^n stripes 
and stars; in the centre the Hammer and Hind. Motto — " By Hammer and 'J md all Arts do 
Stand." This was borne and supported by Masters T. A. Schurman, S. G. Lent, and C. I. 

A Banner of white silk, trinnned with sliver frin']:e, an open hnok painted thprpon. pntitled 
" The Life of Franklin," surmounted by a red wurucco-bound Bible, borne by Master G. Boyd. 

A Banner of blue silk, edged with gold fringe, inscribed " Apprentices' Library," encircled 
by a halo of golden rays, surmounted by a gilt dove, borne by Master H. Brooks. 

A Large Gilt Folio Book, surmounted by Hammer and Hand, borne by Master Brown, the 

Master I. Kneringer, bearing a small blue Banner of stars, closed the rear. 

Two miniature Tables of mahogany were also carried in the Procession, one a tea-table, 
the other a stand, both of which obtained a premium at the Fair in this City, in October last. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 

John Stephens, Jun. Master L E. Vermilye, 

Master B. Burnett. 


No. 22. 

Jameson Cox, Marshal. 

Nathaniel M. Brown, Wm. P. Disosway, 

Otis Harrington, Edward Dayton, 

William Lockwood, John P. Bailey, 

NiEL Gray, Peter D. Vroom, 

Thomas Kennedy, William Burger, 

John W. Degraw, JIoses Bedell, 

Danl. M. Winants, John G. C. Lord, 


E. H Lacy, William P. Shii^iaw, 

Fred. R. Lee, Jesse Forshay, 

Drake B. Palmer, Georoe Greig. 

Fire Department Standard, inscribed " New York Fire Department," borne and sup- 
ported by Members of Companj' No. 37. 

Company No. 9. preceded by their Banner, which represented Neptune chaining down 
Plato, attended by the three-headed dog Cerberus ; surrounded by ladders, hooks, &c. the 
ordinary implements of the calling ; the Standard Bearer was supported on each side by a Mem- 
ber of the Company. Next followed a small Car, consisting of two platforms, handsomely 
carpeted, with pillars between, tastefully decorated with different coloured ribbons and wreaths 
of flowers ; on the upper, platform was a small Engine, complete in every respect, with three- 
eighth inch chambers, from which issued, at intervals, a stream of water to the distance of fifty 
feet, being the workmanship of Wm. Corp, a youth not a mechanic. From the upper platform 
was suspended an elegantly polished brass trumpet, ornamented to correspond with the sur- 
rounding pillars, the whole carried by four Members. 

Washington Company, No. 20, bearing a small Banner with the following Inscription — 

" To him ye nations yield eternal fame, 
" First in the heroic list enrol his name ; 
"High in the sculptured marble let him stand, 
" The undaunted hero of his Native Land." 

Their Engine followed, mounted on a Car dravm by four beautiful black horses. The 
platform was covered with rich Brussels carpet, and surmounted by drapery festooned and 
richly ornamented ; mounted on the platform were two Firemen, clad in appropriate dress, 
bearing implements of their calling. Next in order came their Grand Standard — a portrait of 
Washington. Inscription — " Washington Fire Company, No. 20." On the reverse, a portrait 
of his friend La Fayette. Inscription — " Courage, Skill, and Generosity." 

Company No. 1, with their Banner, on which was painted a view of the Cit)' of New York 
from the Jersey shore ; buildings in the centre of the City represented in flames, to which the 



Genius of America is pointing to direct the Firemen ; over her head is seen hovering the 
Eagle, bearing the Motto — " Where Duty calls, there you will tind us." On the reverse a cor- 
rect likeness of Washington. 

Tradesmens' Company, No. 37, bearing a blue silk Banner, with the Inscription — " Trades- 
mens' Fire Company," encircling the rays of a golden Sun. In the centre of this Company 
was borne a Banner of blue silk, six feet by five — a female figure with her right hand upon 
a spinning wheel, at her feet wheat, fruit, &c. signifying that notwithstanding calamities by fire, 
she, by her industry can obtain a livelihood. In the rear a landscape is represented ; on one 
side of the female are the emblems of Agriculture — the spade, the harrow, the plough, &c. ; oq 
the other Commerce and Manufactures : ships, steam-boats, &c. are seen sailing on the river 
laden with the produce and manufactures of our country, and, on the wharf, is a vessel on the 
stocks nearly completed. In the upper part of the Banner the Motto — " Industry and Perse- 
verance overcome every Obstacle ;" in the lower part, " Presented by the Tradesmens' 
Insurance Company." On the reverse is represented a distant view of the fire at Sa- 

East River Companv, No. 42, displayed their Engine mounted on a Stage, covered with 
carpet and surrounded with a plain scarlet valance, drawn by four beautiful black horses, the 
two postillions mounted. On the Stage, standing in front of the Engine, were two Firemen in 
their appropriate dress, carrying the cue a trumpet, the other the pipe of the Engine ; behind 
them were placed two others, in citizens dress, bearing the bniss torches of the Company. 
Immediately behind the Stage followed the Standard Bearers, with the Compsiny's Banner; in 
rear of them was carried an Engine, in miniature, tistefully decorated. On the back of the 
Engine was an elegant carving, richly gilded, surrounded with a beautiful bronze wreath, and 
supported on each side by a bronze column of the same workmanship. The carving represents 
a marine head discharging water, which runs through several lengths of hose, around a painting 
of Neptune with his trident, in a sea-shell, drawn by sea-horses, into a fountain below; 
ornamented with grain and fruit, witli hooks, ladders, torches, &c. The Banner displays in its 
centre an elevated figure of Minerva ; on her right, a Fireman having ascended ten steps, indi- 
cating ten years service, recieves from her his discharge certificate ; on her left stands another 
Fireman witnessing the transaction, apparently anxious for the same mark of approbation. The 
background represents a number of Engines speeding their way to a distant fire. 


Franklin Company, No. 39, displaying a Banner, on which were exhibited, in the foreground, 
the same figures and subject as that, first decribed, carried by Company No. 9, representing 
the triumph of Water over Fire ; in the distance, on one side flames and smoke are seen ascend- 
ing ; on the other, a sea-nymph in the act of sounding a shell. On the reverse is a correct 
drawing of the Engine, over a Glory, encircled in a wreath of oak-leaves, supported by a golden 
Eiigle, wings expanded, on a gilt globe, with a medallion of La Fayette suspended from his 

Company No. 15, exhibited their Engine mounted on a Car, drawn by four elegant bay 
horses ; on the back of the Engine was a superb painting, representing the tomb of Peterson, 
formerly Foreman of the Company, who lost his life while in the discharge of his duty at the 
fire in Chatham Street, May 19, 181 1. A Fireman is seen reclining on the tomb in the attitude 
of grief. On their Banner is p;iinted a bust of Peterson. 

Equitable Companv, No. 3C, bearing an elegant Bannkh ; Neptune represented in his Car, 
drawn by four sea-horses, two of which are guided by a Cherub flying before him in the air, 
and the other two by a Sea-nymph swimming before the Car, apparently urging them forward, 
surrounded by the Motto — " Conduct me in haste, I'll conquer the Foe and relieve the op- 
pressed." On the reverse. Justice leaning against a pedestal ; a ship on fire in the distance, and 
a house on fire in the foreground. Inscription — " Presented by the Equitable Insurance Com- 

Eagle Company, No. 1.3. — The Engine of this Company was mounted on a Stage drawn by 
four milk white steeds elegantly caparisoned, and led by four Africans dressed in rich Moorish 
costume. The Engine, painted black, was h'ghly varnished, and the mouldings gilded ; the 
wheels and ciurriage were painted cream-colour and striped Idack ; the bands and caps for the 
hubbs of the wheels were of brass, and the tires polished : on the front pannel an Eagle in 
bronze, soaring, bearing the Motto — " Samper Paratus." On the back of the condenser case 
an exquisite painting, representing the Genius of America fostering a young Eagle, which is 
seen hovering over a rock, by her side, near the sea shore ; a ship at anchor, on fire, is seen 
in 'h> distance. This painting was ornamanted with costly India fringe and tassels, tastefully 
arranged, projecting over its top, and supported on each side by carved and bronzed pillars, 
giving it the appearance of a superbly de.^orated pavillion. Attached to the goose neck of the 
Engine was a long brEiss pipe highly polished, " the star spangled banner" waving from its lop. 


The Four Lengths of Hose (two hundred feet) were neatly wound on the reel, and covered 
with a black leather apron, varnished ; on the apron were sewed the name and number of the 
Company ; the letters and figures were cut from a hide, and the white colo\ir produced by 
the natural hair. The axe of burnished steel, and all the implements belonging to the Machine 
were in their proper places. The Stage was covered with an elegant Brussels carpet ; a rich 
drapery of silk and moreen was suspended from its sides, — the colour of the upper festoons was 
light blue, the centre orange, and the lower crimson ; around each festoon was a beautiful fringe 
of silk tassels, of variegated colours, and the whole was supported by twenty-four curtain pins, 
of large size and handsome pattern. On the Stage, in front of the Engine, wils stationed Ed\Vard 
W. Degrove, a Member of the Company, in the dress of a Fireman, with an American Eagle 
painted on the frontispiece of his cap — he bore a brass trumpet ornamented with flowers; on 
his right and left he was supported by youths. Master JameS A. Gray and Master Alfred Lowber, 
each bearing an elegant brass torch, decorated with flowers of various kinds. 

The Banner was inscribed " Eagle Fire Company," and was surmounted by a large gilded 
Eagle. The painting represented Hope leaning on an anchor, directing a Fireman's Widow 
with an infant in her arms to " Firemens' Hall," which is seen in the distance, the door open, 
and rays of light beaming on it from above ; the whole surrounded by a wreath of oak leaves, 
emblamatical of the establishment of the Charitable Fund of the Fire Department of the City 
of New York. On the reverse, a painting of the Engine in a cloud, surrounded by rays of 

Committee of Arrangements. 
Charles I. Hubbs, Niel Grav, 

Gideon De Angelis, Richard C. M'Cormick, 

Edward W. Degrove. 

Scott Compaxv, No. 17, appeared with a Banner; a view of the fire that occurred at 
Brooklyn, Long Island, on the night of August 21, 1822; the same surrounded by an oak 
wreath, over which is inscribed "Brooklyn Fire, August 21, 1822." On the reverse, a draw- 
ing of the Engine, surrounded by an oak wreath. Inscription — " Scott Fire Company." Un- 
derneath, the Motto— " In Peace Firemen, if invaded Soldiers." The Banner is surmounted 
by an Eagle, having suspended from his beak a medal presented to the Company at a late fire. 


United States Companv, No 23, exhibiting their Banner, on one side of which the God- 
dess of Liberty stands erect, supporting the United States Flag with her left arm, and holding a 
Standard in her right hand, on which is a Liberty Cap. On her right is a view of the Island of 
Manhattan, as it was previous to its settlement ; on her left a view of our City and Harbour in 
its present flourishing condition. On the reverse, at the head of the Banner, is inscribed the 
United States Motto ; at the foot, the name of the Company — in the centre, an Engine surrounded 
by twenty-four stars — on the top of the Standard, which supports the Banner, a Liberty Cap 
silvered. Four Members of the Company carried, on a Stage handsomely ornamented, an 
ENiiiNE of one inch chambc'r, two feet long, and eighteen inches high, capable of throwins 
water to the distance of sixty feet, being the best model, and the most effective and complete 
miniature Engine ever exhibited in this country. 

Mechanic Company, No. 28, with a Banner of blue silk, on which was represented a Fire- 
man in appropriate dress, leaning on a pipe encircled by a wreuth. Motto — " Protection and 
Benevolence." On the reverse a pair of torches. The Banner was suspended from a bronzed 
pipe, and surmounted by a gilt fire-cap ; drapery of white satin richly spangled and festooned ; 
the whole in mourning for the loss of a Member (Stephen S. Taylor), who had received injury 
at a late fire. 

Hook and Ladder Companies, No. 1,2, 3, and 4. — Midway from front to rear, in this sec- 
tion of the Procession, the four Hook and Ladder Companies were stationed, marshalled by 
Benjamin J. Scribner. They were preceded by a splendid Banner, on which was delineated a 
vivid representation of a Fire ; flames bursting forth from buildings, chimnies falling, ladders 
raised and raising, and the intrepid pipemen mounting them in defiance of flame and smoke ; their 
powerful streams of water subduing the devouring element, which apparently threatens vast 
destruction. The Hook and Ladder men are seen rushing through the surrounding smoke, flames, 
and ruins, with their hooks and implements, demonstrating their Motto — "We raze to save." 
Nest followed one of their Trucks, drawn by four horses richly caparisoned, the postillions 
mounted. On the truck were laid ladders, hooks, and other implements, all superbly painted. 
Upon the top of (he truck was erected a Pyramid of Ladders, supported on each side by hooks, 
to the height of fifteen feet, tastefully decorated with flags, ribbons, lanterns, torches, &c. On 
each side of the Pyramid appeared two Firemen, in full equipment, bearing axes, &c. and above 
them proudly waved the "Star spangled Banner ; "the whole presenting a correct and beautifijl 
display of this branch of the Fire Department. 



iExNA Company, No. 16, displayed two Bankers ; on the first a view of Mount ^tna in its 
most awful grandeur, the City of Naples and the Bay, crimsoned by the reflection of the moun- 
tain fire presenting one of natures most brilliant scenes. On the reverse Charily represented 
presenting a purse to an orphan supported by a widow ; Charity is pointing to an Inscription on 
the scroll " We relieve the Widow and succour the Orphan." At a distimce stands the weep- 
ing willow, its branches drooping over the grave of a Fireman. The second Banner was of 
blue silk, eight feet square, one side of which represented the fire which took place where the 
Fulton Market now stands ; on the right is a view of Schermerhorn's stores, the shipping at 
the wharves, and of Fulton Ferry ; the fire is raging throughout the whole length of the block, 
exhibiting a lively representation of that element in all its terrific grandeur ; the Firemen, with 
their engines in full operation, are seen actively engaged in endeavouring to arrest its further 
progress, and the streets are crowded with spectators, viewing their exertions with amazement : 
At a distance are seen the snow-capped heights of Brooklyn, brought into view by the light of 
the flames. On the reverse the American Eagle receiving sustenance from the Genius of 
America, represented standing on a rock which projects into the Ocean. 

Manhattan Companv, No. 8, appeared under a blue Banner, ornamented with yellow fringe 
and tassels ; on one side Manhattan is represented reclining on a rock by the side of a stream 
of water, his right arm over the fountain head, and holding in his left hand a paddle. On the 
reverse an Engine in gold, encircled by a green wreath. The Banner is supported by a Spread 
Eagle, which surmounts the staif. 

Clinton Company, No. 41.— This Company has, for years past, been designated as the 
Clinton Company ; with feelings of honpst pride did they, in unison with their brethren of the 
Fire Department, join in celebrating one of the greatest eras in the history of the State, viz. 
the completion of the Grand Erie Canal. Their Engine, richly painted in orange and highly 
gilded, was exhibited on a Stage surrounded by a balustrade, and drawn by four beautiful blood 
bays, mounted by postiUions. The Car was ornamented with a profijsion of rich silk drapery, 
tastefully arranged in festoons, which at intervals displayed the superb carpet, covering the plat- 
form. On the Stage, immediately in front of the Engine, was a white satin Banner bearing the 
Inscription, in letters of gold on a blue ground, " Clinton Fire Company," supported by three 
Members of the Company, embellished at the top with the American Eiigle, wings extended, 
holding in its beak the insignia of Justice. On the condenser case, the most conspicuous part 
of the machine, was a beautiful <\nd correct representation (executed by Thomas Grenell) of 


the arduous and imposing work at that " Great Pass" through a branch of the Allegany Moun- 
tains known as the " Little Falls of the Mohawk." A front view exhibits the Aqueduct thrown 
over the Mohawk from the Canal to the village of Little Falls ; the packet boat Oneida Chief, 
displaying the " Star spangled Banner" and filled with passengers, passing the aqueduct and just 
entering the village ; the River running rapidly beneath and rolling along its tumultuous 
waves over the hidden rocks, forming the rapids as well as the Little Falls of the Mohawk. In 
perspective, on the left of the rich valley of the Mohawk, is to be traced the " Grand Canal," 
that proud monument of a free and enterprising people, with its boats laden with the rich pro- 
ductions of the West pursuing their course to far distant ports ; the highly cultivated farms of the 
German Flats, and the river illuminated by the mild rays of the Sun, in a cloudless sky, sinking 
behind the mountains top. Looking to the right you observe the village of Little Falls, and the 
Great Western Road, an Express conveying the glorious news that " the work is done ;" the left 
shews the Grand Canal, with its locks, at the base of a stupendous mountain, bordering on the 
margin of the river — mountain scenery in its wild and uncultivated state ; in the foreground sits 
the aboriginal Mohawk, contemplating with astonishment the triumph of the arts over nature, 
and the rapid march of civilization. It is presumed, says the report, that in no one instance, 
on the day of the celebration, was there a more direct or appropriate compliment paid to the 
individual, whose name and fortunes have been identified with the success or failure of the Canal, 
than in the one shewn by this Company, for long before the completion of this great State Work 
did they adopt their name. Next, supported by four Members, followed a beautiful and per- 
fect Engine, in miniature, placed on a Stage and decorated with silk drapery, tastefully fes- 
tooned, displaying appropriate devices. The Grand Standard of the Company, of blue silk, 
followed, borne by three distinguished Members wearing blue sashes ; a Fireman represented, 
pipe in hand, actively engaged in opposing the progress of the devouring element. Motto — 
" To aid and assist." On the reverse was a Fiery Phenix. 

North River Company, No. 27. — The Banner of this Company, borne and supported by 
Members, represented Amphitrite in her Car, drawn and attended by Nereides. Motto — " Vigi- 
lance is ever rewarded." On the reverse a view of part of the North River — a house upon 
the bank on fire — steam-boats and other vessels passing. Inscription — " Presented by the 
North River Insurance Company." 

Phenix Company, No. 22. — This Company joined the Procession with their Engine bur- 
nished m a superior style, elevated on a tastefully decorated Car, drawn by four beautiful bay 


horses, richly caparisoned. Men bearing tlieir brazen pipes, and Boys their torches. Other 
fire implements were arranged on the Stage in front of the Engine, on ti.e top of which was 
hovering a Phenix, four feet across the wings ; in his talons he held a ball of tire j from his 
beak was suspended a trumpet tastefully entwined with flowers. 

Company No. 33. — Banner of blue silk, five feet square, bordered with yellow silk fringe. 
The painting on it represented the unfortunate burning of their former Engine, at the fire of 
the great ship house at Manhattan Ishmd, March 14, 182-1 — that immense building (under which 
the steam frigate Fulton the Eirst, was built during the Late War) — vessels on the stocks, 
and ship timber in the yards are seen in Ihimes. 

New York Company, No. 3, with an elegant Banner, painted by Browerre and Quidor, 
young ;irtists, natives of tliis City. The principal figure is Minerva, represented in a sitting 
posture, near a column, entwined by the Standard of the United States, her right foot resting on 
a stool, the left hand pointing to her shield, on which is inscribed " Virtue, Charity, and Pro- 
tection" — her right hand pointing to Heaven, On the right of Minerva are the objects of her 
Charity, orphan children attended by their instructors, in order to return thanks for benefits 
received. On her left new objects of Charity are represented, in the characters of distressed 
Widows of deceased Firemen. Justice holds a conspicuous station in the groupe. In the dis- 
tance buildings are seen in flames, and two Firemen discovered carrying in their arms, from the 
scene of conflagration, one of their Members who had been wounded by the falhng timber, 
another object for the due attention of Minerva. An allegorical painting ot the features of the 
charitable institution of the Fire Department. 

La Fayette Company, No. 7, exhibited their Engine, burnished in a superior style, elevated 
upon a Stage, drawn by four elegcint bay horses. On the back of the Engine was a represen- 
tation of the Battle of Yorktown, with an appropriate Motto. On the front of the Stage was 
erected the Banner of the Company, seven by nine feet, displaying a full length portrait 
of La Fayette on horseback, and a distant view of the battle of Yorktown. On the reverse a 
house on fire in the suburbs of the City, and a female, with one infant in her arms, leading a 
small boy by the hand, neither of them completely clothed, as if just escaped from the building 
in flames. An Engine is seen approaching from the back ground ; the whole decorated with 
other emblems of the calling, tastefully arranged. 


NiAG»R» PoMPAVY, No. 10, preceded by their Banner of blue silk, on one side of which 
was piint ■ I, by f. Greoall, a correct representation of the Falls of Niagara viewed from the 
Table rock ; on the other a display of torches, pipes, and the other implements of Firemen, and 
the Inscription, in letters of gold — " Niag.ira Cotnpany." 

American Compact, No. 4, appeared with th^ir Engine, mounted on a Stage, drawn by 
four fine bay horses ; the Engine glittering with brass hubbs, lifters, and dgures ; a beautiful 
brass bow ornamented with Eagles heads supported the Short Length of leader; two brass 
torches elegantly ornamented were placed crosswise In front, the leaders were enclosed in a 
polished leathern apron with the No. 4. on each side. A Member iu the full dress of a Fire- 
man was stationed on each side of the Engine, one carrying a pipe, the other a polished steel 
axe. The Stage was covered with a handsome carpet and olhi^rwise orn;unented, to correspond 
with the rich appeariince of the Engine. On their Banner of white silk, the figure of an 
Engine surrounded by thirteen stars, representing th^-- originil St.iU's. Inscription — " Fire De- 
partment of New York." The Banner was supported Liy a gilt, holding in his beak a 
trumpet and fire cap. 

Chatham Company, No. 2, followed a Banner, with an Ensinn |i:intcd thereon ; the Mem- 
bers bearing their brilliantly pohshed pipes, torches, and other emblems. 

Protection Company, No. 5, with a large globular brazen Signal Lantern, burnished , 
the number of the Company appearing in crimson, through a profusion of tloivers and ribbons. 
It was borne by a Member of the Company, and supported by others on his right and left, 
each bearing polished brass pipes, decorated to correspond with the lantern. 

Company, No. 24, with a beautiful miniature Engine on the top of a brass pipe, ornamented 
with ribbons borne by a Member, and supported by Members, one bearing a brass pipe, the 
other a steel iixe with curled maple handle, all handsomely ornamented with ribbons. 

Jefferson Company, No. 26, — Hose Company, No. 1. — and other Companies, appeared 
with a variety of appropriate emblems, similarly decorated with those heretofore described. 

The Wardens being by Law distinguished at fires by the City Arms blazoned on their hats, 
very appropriately displayed them, elegantly painted on their Banner, which was of blue silk, 


five by seven feet, tastefully embroidered ; the words " Fire Wardens," in gilt block letters, 
encircled the Arms ; it was supported by a Spread Eagle, perching upon a gilded ball, and was 
borne in the Procession by George Jacobs, assisted by Henry H. Gillett and Augustus Cregier, 
Wardens of the Tenth Ward. 

Secretary, Treasurer, and Collector of the Fire Department. 

Trustees of the Fire Department Fund. 

President and Vice-President of the Fire Department. 

Engineers of the Fire Department. 

Twelve hundred and fifty-two persons, Members of the sever; J Fire Companies, assembled 
at St. John's Park, and were marshalled in the Procession by Jameson Cox, Chief Engineer of 
the Fire Department, and his Assistants. They wore uniform badges emblematical of their 

The Marshal, his Assistants, the Engineers, and Delegates were distinguished by the magni- 
ficence of their decorations. 

The following Gentlemen were appointed by the different Engine Companies, Delegates to 
form a Committee of Arrangements. 

From the Engineers, Samuel J. Willis. 
From No. 1. Charles R. Hatfield. 

2. John G. C Lord. 

3. William Lockwood. 

4. Corns. Romaine. 

5. Peter D. Vroom. 

6. William Civill. 

7. Daniel Berrian. 

8. Otis Harrington. 

9. Thomas Williams. 

10. Henry Palmer. 

11. Abraham V- Vandenberc. 

No. 12. 

John Teller. 


Niel Gray. 


Jas. H. M'Kenzie. 


Thos. Kennedy. 


John W. Decraw. 


William A. Cox. 


Oliver T. Hewlett. 


William B. OnKLt. 


Thomas Hopper. 


John A. Mitchell. 


John Murphy. 


From No. 23. John P. Bailey. 

24. William P. Shipman. 

25. Morris Franklin. 

26. George Greig. 

27. John H. Smith. 

28. Nathaniel M. Brown 

29. Samcel Gunton. 

30. E. B. Messerve. 

31. Danl. M. VVinant. 

42. Samuel Brown. 

From No. 32. Jas. G. Reynolds. 
33. Obediah Newcomb. 
84. E. H. Lacv. 

36. Moses Bedell. 

37. Fred. K. Lee. 

38. James VV. Anderson. 

39. Jesse Forshav. 

40. Richard Cornell. 

41. Drake B. Palmer. 

Supply Engine. 
No. 1. John Groshox. 

Hose Company, 
Thomas Schieffelin, Jun. 

Hook and Ladder Coinpan 

No. 1. William P Disosway. 
2. James B. Bird. 

No. 3. Danl. I. Hide. 
4. Thomas Clark. 

1st. Ward. Wm. A. F. Pentz. 
3rd. Ward. Wm. Burger. 
4th. Ward. John Targee. 

5th. Ward. R. Lowerre. 
Cth. Ward Enoch Dean. 
7th. Ward. Edward Dayton. 

10th. Ward. Augustus Cregier. 

Samuel J. Willis, Chairman. 
Neil Gray, Secretary. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
Samuel Jones Willis, Edward Dayton. 


No. 23. 

George F. Hopkins, Marshal CMounted.) 
George P. Morris. N. B. Penfold. 

A Stage, drawn by four horses, on which were two printing presses, of recent invention. 
These presses are elegant specimens of mechanism ; one manufactured by Rust and Turney— 
the other by Robert Hoe and Co. all of this City. The Presses were kept in operation, during 
the Procession, striking off the annexed Ode, which was written at the request of the Printers, 
by Samuel VVoodworth, a Printer. 



'Tis done ! 'tis done ! — The mighty chain 
Which joins bright Erie to the Main, 
For ages, shall perpetuate 
The glory of our native State. 

'Tis done ! — Proud Art o'er Nature has prevailed ! 

Genius and Perseverance have succeeded ! 
Though selfish Prejudice assailed. 

And honest Prudence pleaded. 

'Tis done ! — the monarch of the briny tide, 

Whose giant arm encircles earth. 
To virgin Erie is allied, 

A bright-eyed nymph of mountain birth. 


To-day, the Sire of Ocean takes 

A sylvan maiden to his arms, 
The goddess of the chrystal lakes, 

In all her native charms ! 

She comes ! attended by a sparkling train ; 

The A'aiadx of the West her nuptials grace : 
She meets the sceptred father of the main, 

And in his heaving bosom hides her virgin face. 

Rising from their watery cells. 

Tritojis sport upon the tide. 
And gaily blow their trumpet shells, 

In honour of the bride. 
Seanymphs leave their coral caves, 
Deep beneath the ocean waves, 
Where they string, with tasteful care, 
Pearls upon their sea-green hair. 
Thetis' virgin train advances, 
Mingling in the bridal dances ; 
Jove, himself, with raptured eye. 
Throws his forked thunders by, 
And bids Apollo seize his golden lyre, 

A strain of joy to wake ; 
While Fame proclaims that Ocea?i^s Sire 
Is wedded to the goddess of the Lake. 
The smiUng god of song obeys, 
And heaven re-echoes with his sounding lays. 

" All hail to the Art which unshackles the soul ! 

And fires it with love of glory ! 
And causes the victor, who reaches the goal, 

To live in deathless story ! 



" Which teaches young Genius to rise from earth, 

On Fancy's airy pinion. 
To assert the chums of its heavenly birth. 

And seize on its blest aominion. 

" The Art which the banner of Truth iinfurl'd, 

When darkness veil'd each nation. 
And prompted Columbus to seek a new world 

On the unexplored map of creation. 

" Which lighted the path of the pilgrim band, 

Who braved the storms of Oceiia^ 
To seek, in a wild and distant land, 

The freedom of pure devotion, 

•' Which kindled, on Freedom's shrine, a flame 
That will glow through future ages, 

And cover with glory and endless fame 
Columbia's immortal sages. 

" The Art, which enabled her Franklin to prove, 

And solve, each mystic wonder ! 
To arrest the forked shafts of Jove, 

And play with his bolts of thunder. 

" The Art, which enables her sons to aspire, 

Beyond all the wonders in story ; 
For an unshackled PRESS is the pillar of tire 

Which lights them to Freedom and Glory. 

" ' Tis this which call'd forth the immortal decree, 
And gave the great work its tirst motion ; 

'Tis done ! by the hands of the brave and the free, 
And Erie is link'd to the Ocean. 


" Then hail to the Art which nnshacles the soul. 

And fires it with love of glory, 
And cnusos the victor who reaches the goal. 

To live in deathless story." 

Such strains — if earthly strains may be, 

Compared to his who tunes a heavenly lyre — 
Are warbled by the bright-haired deity, 

While list'ning orbs admire. 

Such strains shall unborn millions yet awake, 

While, with her golden trunipet smiling Fam^J 
Proclaims the union of the Main and Lake, 

And on her scroll emblazons Clinton's name. 

On the centrp of the Stage, the venerable James OniM was seated in the Library Chair of 
Dr. Franklin, attended by four Boys costumed as Harild.s and Mercuries, who distributed copies 
of the Ode, as th^^y were printed, to the assembled multitiid". The presses were worked by 
H. K. Stockton, Thomas Eastburn, Thomas Van Vorx, ami J;unes liunnolls. 

A Ban-ner, borne and supported by three Members of the Profession. — In the centre a 
Press repr.sented ; on one side the (ioddess of Liberty, supporting the American Flag (the 
foMs of which gracefully waved to the front over the head of the Press) and holding in one hand 
the end of a Scroll ; on the oth.'P side of the Press, Minerv i holding in her hand the other end 
of the Scroll, which pissed over the whde in form of an arch, on which was incribed — " The 
Liberty of the Press is essentul to the Security of Freedom." In the centre, beneath the 
Scroll, and over the head of the Press was seen the Bird of Wisdom, holding in his t;dons a 
Med illion bearing the hkeness of Franklin ; underneath the whole was a Scroll with this In- 
scription — " The Art which preserves ail the Arts." 

Three hundred Printers followed in the prescribed order, the elder Printers at the head, 
the Apprentices in the rear. In front of the Apprentices a Banner, of corresponding size with 
the first, was borne and supported by three Members of the Profession ; a section of the Canal 
represented — the Eagle hovering over the centre, holding in his talons a MedaUion, bearing 


the likeness of De Witt Clinton, and in his beak a Scroll, on which was insrribpd — " Palmam qui 
meruit ferat." Underneath Uie whole was a scroll with this Inscription — " Exegi nionumentum 
sere perennius." 

Durins; the Procession three thousand copies of the Ode were printed on the Stage, and eight 
thousand copies distributed to the citizens. 


Delegates to confer Trith the Corporation. 
A Chandler, George Mather. 


Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
John Lang, Wm. L. Stone. 

Geo. F. Hopkins. 

No. 24. 

Charles Starr, Marshal (Mounted.) 
Joseph Foster. Robert Batie. 

Banner, borne by Christian Brown, supported by John Day and Wm. Walker. On the left 
Time, with his scythe, prepared to destroy the literature with which the world is favoured 
through the instrumentality of the Press ; on the right, with a roll in her hand stands the 
Genius of Literature, with a smiling countenance, pointing to the centre of the piece, which 
represents the interior of a Bindery — workmen in the act of binding books to preserve them 
from the ravages of Time. On the reverse the Arms of the State of New York. 

William Wrao, (who formed the device for the Banner,) and the Committee of 

One hundred and forty-four of this Profession followed ; they each wore a silk badge repre 
senting the Erie Canal and its Locks. Motto — " Devised by Genius, Performed by Industry" — 
suspended from two stars, each having five points, with gold lines, representing rays of light 
darting from the centre, which contained the same device as that represented in the centre 
piece of the Banaer : one of these stars was of red, the other of blue morocco ; the latter, being 
partly covered by the Ibrmer, showed only the blue gilded points between the red ones. About 
midway from front to rear appeared a ponderous Volume, preceded by the finishers, John 
Bradford and Isaac Peckham, it was labelled " Erie Canal Statistics," and was prepared for the 
occasion ; when spread open it measured four feet eight inches by three feet. It was bound in 
red morocco, and superbly ornamented with gold, in the first style of workmanship, and mounted 
on a hand-barrow, tastefully decorated, borne by four Apprentices, and supported by four rib- 
bons attached to its upper part, held by four other Apprentices. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
Charles Starr, Joseph Foster. 

No 25. 

Thomas A. Ronalds, Marshal. 

Banner, borne by John L Rickers, supported by Peter A. Mesier, and Henry T. Megary. • A 
female figure ri'presenting Knowledge, dressed in gold coloured robes, holding a lighted torch in 
her right hand, and partly rechning on a pile ot volumes, one of which being open, she points 
to a passage •' On Canals." The lighted torch is significant of the effects of Learning on 
Science and the Mechanic Arts. The Landscape exhibits a distant view of Lake Erie ; in the 
back ground mountains, and a Canal pas.sing through a cultiv ited country, to the foreground 
consisting of Canal Locks a stream of water with a fall and Paper Mill — a City in front view. 
On the reverse the Motto — " Knowledge is Power." 


The Banner was designed by William B. Gilley, Henry I. Megary, and Andrew T. Good- 
rich, and painted by Henry Inmaa. 

The Booksellers, Stationers, and Music Dealers of the City, Sixty in number, associated for 
the occasion ; each Member wore a broad blue collar over the neck and breast, with an appro- 
priate badge attached thereto. 

Thomas A. Roxalds, President of the Association. 
Delegates to confer 'with the Corporation. 
Thos. a. Ronalds, Elihu AVhite. 

No. 26. 

Members of the Senior Class acting as Marslials. 
,ToH\ M. GuioN, Abraham A. Slover. 

Next, after the Booksellers and Stationers, came the Students of Arts of Columbia College, 
wearing their Collegial robes, and decorated with the insignia of their respective Institutions, the 
blue and white roses and pendent silver badges of the Philo-lexian and Peitho-logian Societies. 
" Nothing (says the Report) could more evince the general interest excited by the event celebrated, 
than the contrasted appearance of this Body with the brilliant Military display which they immedi- 
ately preceded. With all they could unite their gratulations, upon the accompUshment of a mighty 
and an advantageous work ; yet was it their peculiar pride and boast to recognize in the com- 
mencement, progress, and completion of that work, the talent and energy of an individual whose 
successors they were, in that Literary Institution where he, in his early days, had laid ihe 
foundation of his future, his attained pre-eminence. He had merited the appclhition of his 
Country's Benefactor, and if the pride of Greece, with the eniinent of ancient cities, thought 
it nothing derogative to contest the honor of giving birth to a bard, surely there was good cause 
of proud exultation in beinc; associated with a Clinton, as sons of the same Institution, though 
he had passed flir beyond the thresliold, upon which they were now but just treading." 


The Procession walked in the Jollon-itig order : — 

The Marshals. 

A Fpll Band of Musicians, splendidly arrayed in dresses of scarlet. 

The Students of the Freshman ;ind Sophomore Classes. 

An elegant Banner, appropriate to the occasion, borne by the Janitor of the College, sup- 
ported by a Student from the Junior and one from the Sophomore Classes. 

The Banner was a large allegorical representation of the Meeting of the Waters of the 
Lake, River, and Ocean, personated by their presiding Deities ; the first of these occupying 
the foreground was a Water God reclining among the rushes, and leaning upon a vase from 
which the water appeared to flow ; in this attitude he seemed attentively to contemplate the 
approach of the Ocean Deity from the opposite side, who, attended by Tritons with their marine 
shells, and grasping his trident, was drawn in his sea-car by foaming sea horses ; at a short dis- 
tance from the God of the Lake, was reclining a Naiad, the personifier of the Hudson, and 
further back anothar N'aiad, the ruling Deity of the Canal, was sporting in its waters as it swept 
around the base of a precipitous mountain which, intercepting its level progress, it ascended by 
a sticcession of Locks, through one of which a boat was seen passing, while another borne on 
the waters of the Canal was just appearing in sight from behind the eminence ; another Nymph, 
representing the Mohawk, wis descernible amid a grove <if pines, near the summit of the moun- 
tain, down the side of which the water from her urn was rushing. The attention of the several 
Deities appeared to be arrested by th-? coming of Ncptunj who, as he approached, w;is pointing 
to the scene above, intimating a connexion between it and the object of his visit. The scene 
to which he directed was this ; — upon the mist arising from tlie Canal sat Minerva, who, having 
Irii.l .Lsiile her aRt;is, supporled in Ut-.c left hand a Medallion of Clinton, while, with the ri^ht, she 
pointed to a distant view of Cohimbia College, elevated upon the clouds formed from the rising 
vapours, and terminating the splendid rays of the Sun, whi'^li, through an opening in the moun- 
tain, appeared emerging out of the distant waters of the Lake. Above the wboI>j wis inscribed 
the Motto — "Lumina nunc tribuit rui quondmi Liimina mater." This Banner, designed and 
painted expressly for the occasion has since been deposited in the Coiiege Librai'^ as a momento 
of the great event celebrated. 

The Students of the Junior and Senior Classes closed tlie rear. 


Oae hunrlrerl Students were in the Procession, and a large paity went to the Ocean to witness 
the ceremonies there. 

The Banner was designed by J. R. Smith, and painted by Thomas Grenell. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
John M. Gpio.v, Hewlet R. Peters. 

No. 27. 

Edward Preble Marcellin, Alarsluil. 

Fifty Medical Students reported. 

John F. Gray, Chairman. 

John H. Slocum, Secretary. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 

Edwakd p. Marcellin, Henry E. Griffith. 

No. 28. 
Major-General Mapes, Senior Officer. 

The Officers of the Second and Third Divisions of Infantry, and of the First Brigade of 
Artillery, with many of the Non-commissioned Officers and Privates of the Artihery and Light 
Infantry, amounting in all to Four hundred and ten, appeared in the uniform of their respective 
Corps. They were provided with an excellent Band of uniformed Musicians, which was 
stationed in their centre. 


Committee of Arrangements. 

Major-Generals Morton, Mapes, and Fleming. 

Brigadier-Generals Paulding, Benedict, and Mount. 

Commissary-General Mum. 

Colonels Brett, Spicer, Maxwell, Purdy, Chester, Nichols, Tompkins, J. J. Jones. 

CoLDEN, Graham, Doughty, and Gracie. 

Lieutenant-Colonels Moore, Morris, Booraem, Hewitt, and Strykek. 

Major P. M. Wetmore. 

Delegates on the part of the Military to meet in General Committee of Arrangements. 
Major-General Morton, Major-General Mapes, 

3I:ijor-General Fleming. 
Brigadier-General Benedict, Brigadier-General Mount. 



R. W. Mordecai Myers, Grand Marshal. 

The R. W. Grand Lodge of Free and accepted Masons of the State of New York, headed 
by the following Graod Oflicers : — 

The M. W. Martin Hoffman, Esq. Grand Master. 

The R. W. Richard Hatfield, Deputy Grand Master. 

The R. VV. and Rev. Henry I. Feltus, D. D S. Gr;md Warden. 

The R. W. Matson Smith, M. D.J. Grand Warden. 

The R. W. Elias Hicks, Grand Secretary. 

The R. W. George W. Heyer, Grand Treasurer. 

The R. W. and Hev. Frederick C. Schaeffer, Grand Chaplain. 

The R. W. and Rev. Jonathan M. Wainwright, Do. 



The R. W. and Rev. James G. Ooilvie, Grand Chaplain. 

The R W. and Rev. Archibald Maclay, Do. 

The R. W. George W. Rodgers, Grand Sword Bearer. 

The R. W. MoRDECAi Myers, Grand Marshal. 

The R. W, William E. Ross, Grand Standard Bearer. 

The W. Oliver M. Lownds, Grand Steward. 

The W. Edward Higgins, Do. 

The W. Watson E. Lawrence, Do. 

The W. James Flanagan, Do. 

The W. James Wilkie, Senior Grand Deacon. 

The W Jonathan D. Stevenson, Junior Grand Deacon. 

Br. Joseph Jacobs, Grand Pursuivant. 

Br. Robert Young, Grand Tiler. 

Br. Gerrit Lansing, Assistant Grand Pursuivant. 

And represented by the Masters, Past Masters, and Wardens of the following Lodges amount- 
ing in the whole to Three hundred persons clothed in the emblematical badge of the Order, 
and decorated with the jewels, hangings, and insignia appurtenant to their respective officers, viz. — 

St. Johns, Lodge, No. 1. La Sincerite Lodge, No. 122. 

Independent Royal Arch Lodge, No. 2. Mount Moriah Lodge, No. 132. 

St. Andrews' Lodge, No. 7. Benevolent Lodge, No. 142. 

St. Johns, Lodge, No. 9. Clinton Lodge, No. 143. 

Hiram Lodge, No. 10. Mechanic Lodge, No. 133. 

Holland Lodge, No. 16. New Jerusalem Lodge, No. 158. 

Trinity Lodge, No. 39. Concord Lodge, No. 304. 

Phoenix Lodge, No. 40. German Union Lodge, No. 322. 

L'Union Francaise Lodge, No. 71. Hoh.inlinden Lodge, No. 338. 

Fortitude Lodge, No. 81. Hibernia Lodge, No. 339. 

Abrams Lodge, No. 83. Silentia Lodge, No. 360. 

Washington Loflge, No. 84. York Lodge, 367. 

Adelphi Lodge, No. 91. New York Lodge, No. 368. 

Albion Lodge, No. 107. Manhattan Lodge, No. 370. 

Morton Lodge, No. 108. Minerva Lodge, No. 371. 


La Fayette Lodge, No. 373. Franklin Lodge, No. 380. 

Hoffman Lodge, No. 378. Greenwich Lodge, No. 381. 

Eastern Star Lodge, No. 379. Richmond Lodge, No. 384. 

Mariners Lodge, No. 385. 

Committee of Arrangements. 
R. W. Elias Hicks, Grand Secretarj-. R. W. Mordecai Mters, Grand Marshal. 

No. 30. 

James VVhittv, Marshal. 
Peter Swain, Uel West. 

Banner, borne by John Hanna, and supported by two master-workmen. — The emblems of 
the Trade represented — a tin Coffee-pot, a copper Tea-kettle, a Hammer and Mallet. Inscrip- 
tion — " Grand Canal — Tinplate Workers and Coppersmiths." 

The Master Workmen followed the Banner. 

A Large Car, drawn by four handsome grey horses. — In the centre part of the Car the 
Five Double Locks at Lockport represented in copper; twenty-four tin Stars on each side of 
the Locks representing the States in the Union ; the boat Lady Clinton ascending and the boat 
Lady of the Lake descending through the Locks — three other boats lay in the Basin. The locks 
were filled with water from a reservoir under the Canal by means of a forcing pump. On the 
right side of the Car a work-bench ; two Coppersmiths at work, making a copper tea-kettle. 
On the left a work-bench, three Tin-plate Workers making a tin oven, (to be presented to the 
Honourable Richard Riker, Recorder of New- York, as a mark of respect for his politeness to 
the Mechanics,) a tin Coffee-pot, presented to C. Jennings, of the City Hotel, and a number of 
articles of minor note presented to the citizens during the Procession. On the front of the Car the 
Five Double Locks at Lockport, made of tin. On the rear of the Car a small Banner, with the 


Inscription — "Grand Canal — Locks at Lockport — Completion of the Erie Canal, October 26, 
1826." Cornelius Berrian, Master- Workmen on the Stage ; John Ames, Foreman. The Car 
was followed by the Journeymen and Apprentices. 

Two hundred individuals were marshalled in the ranks of these Trades ; they wore on the 
left breast as badges, the emblems of the Trade impressed upon white silk. 

The Station, in the Procession, assigned to this Association was in rear of the Potters, 
and preceding the Shipwrights ; they marched in the rear at their own request, as it 
afforded them a better opportunity of exhibiting the process of ascending and descending in the 

Committee of Arrangements. 
Uel West, Chairman. 
Joseph R. Simpson, John Hanna, 

Richard Ritter, John Ames, 

James Wilson, Jacob Table, 

John Graham, James Whittv. 

Delegates to confer with the Corporation. 
Joseph P. Simpson, Samuel Nichols. 

The Honourable the Corporation of New York, with their invited Guests — 
The Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and the other State Officers ; — The C;mal Commis- 
sioners and Engineers ; — The Committees from the Western Towns, from Albany, and the Towns 
on the North River ; — The Officers of the Army on this station and from West Point, with their 
excellent Band ; — The Officers of the Navy ; — The Marine and Nautical Societies ; — Amount- 
ing in the whole to Eight hundred persons, joined the Procession at the Battery after the 
return of the Flotilla from the Ocean. 



Marshal of the Dav and Aids. 

Band of Musicians. 


JVo. Societies. 

Marshals. JVo. 

in Procession. 

1. Horticultural Society, 

Michael Floy, 


2. Tailors, 

Isaac Hoogkirk, 


3. lospectors of Pearl Ash, (no Report,) 

4. Bakers, 

C. Mills and P. Brown, 


5. Coopers, 

James Seguine, 


6. Butchers, 

Thomas Gibbons, 




Tanners, Curriers, and Leather Dressers, 

William M' Alpine, 



Cordwainers' Society, 

J. Lennon and M. Rimball, 




Reuben Munson, 



Hatters' Society, 

Joseph Juel, 




Chas. T. Pierson, 



House Painters' Society. 

John Marsh, 



Stone Cutters, 

A. Debaun and A. Masterson, 









In Procession. 


Fancy and Windsor Chairmakers, 

D. Lee and G. Nuttman, 



Potters' Society, 

C. Crolius, Jun. 



Saddlers and Harness Makers, 

Henry Storms, 



Union Society of Shipwrights k Caulkers, 

Isaac Webb, 




John Mount, 



Whitehall Watermen, 

George Howard, 




Thomas Day, 



Readers Apprentices' Library, 

J. C. Vermilye, 



22. The Fire Department, 

23. Printers, 

24. Bookbinders, 

25. Booksellers, Stationers, and Music Dealers, 

26. Students of Columbia College, 

27. Sudents of Medicine, 

28. Officers of the Militia, 

29. Masonic Lodges, 

30. Tinplate Workers and Coppersmiths, 

Jameson Cox, 


Geo. F. Hopkins, 


Charles Starr, 


Thomas A. Ronalds, 


John M. Guion, 


E. P. Marcellin, 


Maj. Gen. Mapes, 


Mordecai Myers, 


James Whitty, 


The Battery fence, opposite to Greenwich Street, was removed, in order to secure sufficient 
space for turning the Cars and Stages, no less than twenty-two, of large dimensions, being dis- 
tributed in the different sections of the Procession. The Coopers had one, the Butchers two, 
the Tanners, Curriers and Leather Dressers two, the Combmakers one, the Hatters one, the 

^M^.Pre^ .rj^ 







in Procession. 


Fancy and Windsor Chairmakers, 

D. Lee and G. Nuttman, 



Potters' Society, 

C. Crolius, Jun. 



Saddlers and Harness Makers, 

Henry Storms, 



Union Society of Shipwrights & Caulkers, 

Isaac Webb, 




John Mount, 



Whitehall Watermen, 

George Howard, 




Thomas Day, 



Readers Apprentices' Library, 

J. C. Vermilye, 



22. The F'ire Department, 

23. Printers, 

24. Bookbinders, 

25. Booksellers, Stationers, and Music Dc 

26. Students of Columbia College, 

27. Sudents of Medicine, 

28. Officers of the Militia, 

29. Masonic Lodges, 

30. Tinplate Workers and Coppersmiths, 

Jameson Cox, 


Geo. F. Hopkins, 


Charles Starr, 


Thomas A. Ronalds, 


John M. Guion, 


E. P. Marcellin, 


Maj. Gen. Mapes, 


Mordecai Myers, 


James Whitty, 


The Battery fence, opposite to Greenwich Street, was removed, in order to secure sufficient 
space for turning the Cars and Stages, no less than twenty-two, of large dimensions, being dis- 
tributed in the different sections of the Procession The Coolers had one, the Butchers two, 
the Tanners, Curriers and Leather Dressers two, the Combmakers one, the Hatters one, the 

^jTAi^ «^®h-tb:bib^^^ 




Shipwrights and Caulkers one, the Boatbuilders one, the Whitehall Watermen one, the Rope- 
makers one, the Fire Department nine, the Printers one, the Tinplate Workers and Copper- 
smiths one ; all of which, together with the decorations of the several other Associ.itions, were 
designed with great propriety, and prepared in a manner highly creditable to the taste of the 
respective Committees of Arrangement. 

The Column proceeded to the Battery and, returning by the Easterly side of Greenwich 
Street, continued at a moderate pace, with short intervals when a halt was deemed necessary, 
to and up Canal Street to its intersection with Chapel Street, which being the position occupied 
by the rear of the column at the commencement of the march, the Procession was there halted 
for the purpose of allowing lost distances to be regained, some delay having occurred at the 
point of turning, on the Battery. 

The space that had now been passed over by the Procession exceeded one mile and a half, 
and was accomplished, including the halts, in one hour and fifteen minutes. To the vast assom- 
blage collected in Greenwich Street the ascending and descending portions of the column, 
while psssing each other, presented a truly splendid spectacle. 

It is deemed needless to dwell longer on the progress of the column, than to state, that it 
was conducted over that part of the designated route, from the Battery through Greenwich and 
Canal Streets, Broadway, Broome Street, the Bowery, Chatham and Pearl Streets to the Battery, 
a distance of four miles and a half, in two hours and tifty minutes. In every part of our route 
thoasanils of spectators were assembled to witness the scene, and in repeated instances the 
Procession was cheered as it passed along. 

By means of the Telegraph under the superintendence of Captain John Greene, who 
promptly complied with the request to tr.msmit and answer our despatches, a constant commu- 
nication was kept up with Charles Rhind, Esq. commanding the Flotilla, engaged also in the 
celebration of the day. At fifty minutes past ten the signal was ordered to indicate that the 
Procession had moved; at seven minutes after one the head of the column reached Pearl 
Street, at its intersection with Chatham Street ; this information T\as also communicated to the 
Flotilla; and at forty minutes after our the signd was made, announcing the intelligence that the 
Procession was in Pearl Street ready to enter the Baltery. 


Here a halt became necessary in consequence of a deviation from the concerted arrange- 
ments, the Flotilla being ordered to approach the British Ships of War, for the purpose of return- 
ing the compliment shewn by them, in a second salute, on the arrival of the Fleet from the 

By thirty minutes past two the Flotilla had passed Governors Island, and was saluted from the 
Battery, by a detachment from General Benedicts Brigade. At the conclusion of this salute the 
Procession resumed its march, passing over the paved walk of the Battery to the main avenue 
leading from the Castle, and along that avenue to Broadway, moving at a slow rate. The head 
of the column reached the point of separation opposite the South Gate of the Park, at fifteen 
minutes past three, where the Societies dispersed agreeably to the order, with the greatest regu- 
larity, marching alternately by Broadway and Chatham Street, through lanes that were opened 
iuthe immense mass here assembled. 

The Honourable the Corporation and their guests, who joined the Procession at the Battery 
in compliance with previous arrangement, followed the column ; they proceeded through the 
Park, conducted by the Marshal of the D^y and his Aids, and arrived at the City Hall at thirty 
minutes piist four when three hearty cheers from the collected multitude closed this branch of 
the Celebration. 

I reserve this place to note that, during the day, a very large portion of our population 
passed under my immediate observation, and that of the Gentlemen associated with me ; and it 
gives me great pleasure to remark that not a solitary instance of riot or disorder of any kind 
was witnessed by either of us : the same good feeling that animated the Procession appeared to 
have extended itself to the spectators. It was found necessary, in two instances, to remove 
obstructions which, had they remained, would have impeded the progress of the large Stages ; 
the request to perform this task was made to individuals in the crowd, by whom it was immedi- 
ately and carefully executed. 

It will be recollected that the Laws of this State prohibit, under a severe penalty, the assem- 
bling of armed men within ten days before or during any State Election. The Procession was 
marshalled on the Fourth of November, the General Election commenced on the Seventh, we 
were therefore deprived of the aid which would otherwise have been afforded us by the 
uniformed militia ; but then the gratifying proof would have been wanting, that the exhibition 
of bayonets is not essential to the preservation of order in New York. 


It now becomes my duty to state, that the Reports received bear ample testimony to the 
good feeling which prevailed throughout the Societies and Associations that constituted the Pro- 
cession, and to their unanimous desire to conduct their respective parts in the Celebration, in 
a manner that should reflect honour on themselves, and credit on the City. A commendable 
emulation displayed itself which materially lightened the duty of those who were charged with 
directing the Procession, and which enabled them to conduct, with an order only inferior to that 
of discipUned troops, a body of Six thousand nine hundred citizens over the prescribed route, in 
less time than was considered as necessary for the purpose. The greatest regularity and deco- 
rum were observed throughout, and it is worthy of remark that not a single accident occurred. 

The Societies and Associations, noticed in this Report, are entitled to my warmest thanks for 
their punctuality in assembling at the time designated, and for their uniformly meritorious con- 
duct while under my directions. The magnificent display produced by their contribution is 
acknowledged to have been, in every respect, worthy of the great occasion. 

My thanks are also due to the saluting party at the Batter}', detached from General Bene- 
dict's Brigade, to Captain Nefus, of the 11th Regiment, 1st. Brigade, N. Y. S. Artillery, com- 
manding the Detachment, and to his Officers, for the very important assistance rendered by them. 

To Colonels Charles Kixg and James J. Jones, Major Nicholas Low, Jun. and Mr. Simon 
Van Wiivkle, the Gentlemen who acted as my Aids on the occasion, the greatest praise is due 
for their unremitted exertions and most efficient services. 

I now respectfully submit my Report to the Committee with the remark that it is impossible, 
by a written statement, to communicate a just idea of the style and splendour of the Procession ; 
but, as the account is strictly accurate in its details, I indulge the hope that it will be found 

I have the honour to be, 

Your obedient Servant, 

JVew York, Dec. 1825. 



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liV an Exhibition of Artificial Fire Works extraneous light is excluded as far as is practicable, 
but in the display exhibited at the City Hall, on the evening of the Grand Canal Celebration, it 
was illuminated by twenty-three hundred and two brilliant lights, consisting of fifteen hundred 
and forty-two wax candles, four hundred and fifty lamps, (giving effect to a large Transparency) 
and three hundred and ten variegated lamps, so that the front of the Hall presented a lustre of 
peculiar splendour and brilliancy, which rendered the task of giving relief to the Fire Works 
very ditficuh. 

It therefore required extraordinary means to meet this difficulty, which could only be effected 
by the preparation of such Fire Works as would not only be proportionate to the size of the 
edifice, but also be capable of counteracting, or rather overwhelming, by their brilliancy, the 
power of the Illumination. 

The artist accomplished this by means of thirteen gerbes (each six inches in cahbre, and 
containing fifty pounds of composition) which alternately changing into Chinese, Diamond, and 
other fires, produced a most striking effect ; whilst these were operating auxihary works were 
placed in the rear, and being fired at the same moment, formed a background which gave relief 


to the brilliancy of the gerbes, and, at the same time, projected fifteen hundred large fire balls, 
crossing and intersecting each other at different angles, forming portions of concentric 
circles. A succession of reports from the powder, while projecting, rendered the discharge 
similar to feu de joie ; the effect of this combination was singulnrly magnificent — sometimes 
ejecting brilliant sparks in the form of a willow decorated with stars, at others they resembled 
the poplar, each being accompanied with showers of gold and silver rain. These combinations 
so far eclipsed the other llluuiiuations as to draw repeated bursts of applause from an immense 
multitude of spectators. 

The rockets used on this occasion were remarkable for their size and effect. During the 
exhibition three hundred and twenty rockets of four pounds each — thirty of nine pounds — and 
twenty-four of tiventy pounds were projected — the heads of these tastefully diversified with scrolls, 
serpents, snails, silver rain, star composition, &c. and were fired from both wings so as to intersect 
each other in their flight, the larger rockets being discharged at an angle of forty degrees, so as 
to fall into the North River. These rockets left a beautiful peacocks' tail from the moment of 
their flight till their disappearance. The manner in which the rods were fixed, was such as to 
be disengaged in the air, and fall in pieces apart from the case, so that not a single accident 
occurred. The artist is entitled to the highest credit for the splendid effect he produced, and 
the great care taken to avoid accidents. It is believed a more magnificent exhibition of Fire- 
works was never witnessed on this side of the Atlantic. 

iDiiwir^^ (DiLiiiM^^®Kro 




" This solemnity at this place on the first arrival of vessels from Lake Erie, is intended to indi- 
cate and commemorate the navigable communication, which has been accomplished between 
our Mediterranean Seas and the Atlantic Ocean, in about eight years, to the extent of more than 
four hundred and twenty-five miles, by the wisdom, pubhc spirit, and energy of the State of 
New York ; and may the God of the Heavens and of the Earth smile most propitiously on this 
work, and render it subservient to the best interests of the human race." 

SAI>lIiriEIL IL , MITCMI!L]L I^ &I.]L,I]) 




The Governor having poured into the Bay the keg of Lake Water, and concluded his observa- 
tions, Dr. Mitchill was invited by the Recorder, pursuant to the order of business, to perform 
the next part of the ceremony. This consisted of an effusion of waters from various bottles, 
derived from several European rivers, significant of the connexion between our North American 
States, by navigation and commerce, with the countries through which they respectively run ; 
though, in mingling these samples from abroad with the stream of the Hudson, there was a more 
particular allusion to the trading and social intercourse between New York and the cities on 
their several tranks. 

The waters from the Elbe, the Thames, the Seine, and Tagus, having been thus disposed of, 
though various others were on hand, the solemn act was followed by an address in the following 
words, from Doctor Mitchill to R. Riker, Esq as the representative of the Common Council and 
Chairman of the General Committee of Arrangement. 


"The present is a day memorable in this eventful age. Let it be scored white in the calendar 
for ever. The celebration now held is a sequel of that which took place a little more than two 
years ago at Albany ; then, in the figurative language allowed to poets and orators, the Load op 
THE Seas wedded the Lady of the Lakes. 


" Man delights in types and symbols. They are often very useful and significant. The ring 
presented to the bride is a token of her husband's earnest affection and plighted love ; a handful 
of soil, and a cutting from a tree received from the granter of an estate, give rightful possession 
to a purchaser ; the olive-branch is the emblem of peace ; in the rite of baptism, the appUca- 
tion of pure water to the body is intended to denote the state of the soul under newness of life ; 
and, on the late occasion, the mixture of the briny fluid from the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacitic 
Oceans, with the saltless water of the Canal, was an emblem of the consummated union between 
the high and mighty parties. 

" The imagination possesses a sort of creative power — it can vivify and enliven every thing. 
Johnson wrote of Shakspeare, 

" Each shade of many-coloured life he drew ; 
" Exhausted worlds and then imagined new." 

It is an admirable trait in the constitution of the human mind. Fact, in many instances, acquires 
illustration from fancy. Fable, ever since the instructive invention of Jotham, and the moral 
compositions of Pilpay, has been acknowledged to be one of the agreeable and impressive 
modes of conveying truth ; and fiction, even in the grave proceedings of the law, is resorted 
to for Ihe purpose of happy elucidation. 

" Hence the ancients, in consideration of the great importance belonging to rivers, elevated 
them to the rank of deities, and constructed temples near their sources, where the figure of the 
presiding one was placed. His posture was that of reclining on an urn, from which water 
gushed : a grotto was generally the seat of it. Thus, the Tiber, the Nile, the Tigris, the 
Danube, and the Po, among numerous other streams, were considered as having a tutelary genius 
of exalted rank, sung by the bards, and even figured by the sculptors. The river-gods were 
attended by beings of a nymph-like character, called Naiads. It was a modern and happ3' im- 
provement in these matters to ascribe a female form and attributes, to the chief allegorical per- 
sonage of the fountains, and to distinguish her by the becoming title already mentioned. 

" Under similar impressions it has become customary to portray personified Liberty, with her 
staff and cap ; Hope, with her anchor ; Faith, with her cross ; Temperance, with her pitchers ; 


Justice, with her sword and balance ; and even Death itself, a negative power, or non-entity, 
with a dart, and the power to strike. So Time has his scythe and hour-glass ; Janus, or 
Space, his four faces ; and the Soul of Man the shape of a butterfly. 

" It was no wonder that the Ruler of the Deep should have become enamoured of our 
incomparable Belle ; it was natural enough he should, during the years of assiduity it cost 
him to win her, have composed stanzas like these — 

•' On the wings of the wind that Atlantic supplies, 

" And the flood of the river as upward it goes, 
" I forwarded tributes of tears and of sighs, 

" Bidding breezes and waters convey her my woes : 
" But wretch that I am ! behold Auster return, 

" Declaring how weary he threw down his load, 
" And the stream which the Hudson efi'used from his urn, 

" Ebb back the whole freight that my fondness bestowed." 

•' Since tiie nuptials were celebrated, she has taken time to arrange her lands and tenements, 
with their appurtenances, and to superintend many intern<J and domestic concerns of peculiar 
moment. These, having been completed, she now comes forth, as a lawful and virtuous partner, 
to behold and possess the domain of her august spouse. This is the liquid expanse now open 
before us, equal to three-fourths of the surface belonging to the terraqueous globe ; in it she 
has full jointure and dower, which should any pirate, freebooter, or disturber of any kind, dare 
to invade, the wrong will be avenged by ten millions of freemen, who owe her homage, and are 
ready to assert her rights, with all the courage, strength, and blood, that may be necessary. 
These are the citizens who, by that combination of labour and skill called Industry, have 
rendered the quaking bog arable, and the solid upland navigable. 

■' She has been received with a most cordial welcome. Her progress through an artificial 
river, more than three hundred miles lone, was unexampled. At her annunciation obstacles of 
every kind disappeared. Was an excavation necessary for her accommodation ? — the rocks 
disparted and made room. Was an embankment required? — the ground rose to its proper 
ftlevation. Were locks and reservoirs necessary to go up and down dechvities ? — they sprung 


into being and performed their functions. What happened to Homer's Juno before, might 
almost be said to have again befallen this divinity of ours — 

" Touched by her secret key the doors imfold ; 
" Self-closed behind her shut the valves of gold." 

Was water dennnded to tacilitate conveyance ? — the ponds and brooks joyfully furnished their 
stores. During her journey, tlie voices of freemen all along the line, uttered shouts of gladness. 
The mouths of cannon told in strong accents her majestic movement. Illumination, song, and 
dance, honored the dignified march. 

" And, what an accompaniment was there ? Michigan, and Huron, and Eric sent their flo- 
tillas. Greenbay and Chicago now consider Michillimakinac and Detroit, heretofore frontier 
posts, as but places of refreshment on the voyage. She arrives rich in friends and produce. 
jS'ever was there an indication of so much wesUth and fortune brought by a wife to her hus- 
bmd ; the farm, the mine, and the manufactory, send their diversified and invaluable products ; 
and. what is more, cultivated mnn, in the image of his Creator, attends in his best mood and 
array, to witness and assist the exhibition. 

" Appear then, thou Monarch of the boundless Main, who, being immortal like thy helpmate, 
never waxeth old, and gaze at the spectacle! a procession through this estuary or arm of thy 
dominion, in boats, vessels, and floating structures, never equalled in kind or equipment, by any 
aquatic expedition, for the distance of more than fifty leagues. The sail and the oar were not 
enough to urge the moving mansions along — the irresistible force of steam was made auxiliary 
in the work, or rather it may be said to have performed the part of a principal. Such was the 
appearance that it brought to mind Virgil's notice of the Roman fleets at Actium — 

" It seemed as if the Cyclades were free ; 

" Were raised once more, and floating in the sea." 

'• Advance, I pray, and salute thy visiter. Thy attention is also solicited, surrounded as thou 
art by Nereids, with their corals, and by Tritons, with their shells, to the intelligence newly 
arrived from distant climes. 


•' Offerings, of amicable meaning, meet us here. The foreign river-gods, on hearing that 
this celebration was meditated, have begged leave to join their libations to ours. Their petition 
has been granted. 

" The Elbe, whose water has been poured out and united with that of the Hudson, has 
been informed that his donation was most acceptable ; that it was considered a token of the 
commercial connexion subsisting between the noble rivers ; and, that, in the pacitic relations 
of the two hemispheres, it was prophesied, for a long time, there would be no interruption. He 
was requested to tell the Bohemian, Saxon, Prussian, and Danish Kings, — the cities of Dresden, 
Hamburg, Altona, Bremen, and all the towns situated on or near his banks, that the kindest feel- 
ings existed towards them. 

" The Thames, whose fluid is famous lor its potable qualities, as well as for brewing and dye- 
ing, was told that his contribution had been well received anfl applied. The minghng was 
understood as the sign of a cement between nations which ought never to have been divided ; but 
having been separated by destiny, ought, nevertheless, always to cultivate the best relations. 
He was instructed to proclaim from his residence, near the confines of the Severn, to the learned 
bodies of Oxford — to the Royal House at Windsor — to the commercial and high-minded inha- 
bitants of London — to the naval constructors and heroes at Deptford, Greenwich, and Chatham, 
and to ail others within his reach and influence, that his meaning was perfectly comprehended 
and duly appreciated. 

" The gift of the Spine, thnt affords drink to the metropolitans of a most polished and im- 
portant nation, has been cordi dly accepted, and simil.irly employed. His genius has been in- 
formed, at his abode, away behind the ral'arious basin of i'aris nod the formation of qcartzy- 
buhr, whence our m<mutacturers of tlour procure the m itcrial for tlieir prt-ferable mill-stones, he was honored in grand form, on this auspicious ilay. 

" The contribution of the Tagus has been received and disposed of like the preceding sam- 
ples. A message has been forwarded to his residence, beyond the mountains of Estremadura, to 
this effect ; and he has been instructed to inform the people who 5pe;ik the Castilian tongue, 
from Bis -ay to Andalusia, how we entertain the expectation that the valiant Spaniards may soon 
exii rience i huppy deliverance from Iheir comi.iotions. A corresponding expression of senti- 
ment has been directed to the Portuguese. To both was extended the sentiment, that as we 


might be accommodated with certain productions of theirs, and themselves with certain articles 
of ours, the parties were sufficiently apprised of the reciprocal accommodution, to iorbid, with- 
out the gravest cause, even a suspension of the intercoiirse. 

'■ Turning from the Eastern hemisphere to the Southern section of the Western, the offerings 
of the Oronoko, the Amazon, and the Plata, entreat an incorporation with our hquid element ; 
their presidents, seated high on the snow-capped and cloud-covered Cordilleras, have been 
already told that we are not wholly uninformed of the regions their floods penetrate on their 
route to the vast receptacle of waters ; that we hail their emancipation from European depen- 
dence ; and that we look forward to the time when their almost illimitable countries shall be 
inhabited by a self-governed and virtuous people. 

" In performing those acts of the day, there is another occurrence too memorable to be 
omitted. As in the celebration of religious rites, the water, in the hands of pious and qualified 
ministers at the altar, becomes consecrate and holy, so, the several portions of aqueous element 
employed in these ceremonies have become renovate and republican. Strange as may seem, 
the operation has not ended here : the virtue infused with them (and although heretofore 
possessed by our own, never with so strong a tincture) has spread from this spot by a com- 
bination of mechanical impulse, chemical attraction, and diffusive propagation, through the whole 
mass of waters, with an electrical rapidity and a magnetical subtilty, that authorises me to pro- 
nounce the circumfluent Ocean republiecndzed ! 

'' It is done ! 

" Sire ! he who now accosts you, has no contrivance to conjure up new associations of ideas, 
nor to utter them in phrases novel, or unheard before ; yet, if he did possess that power, he 
would tell you how this recently-imparted influence would henceforward co-operate with its 
phosphorence to render it luminous, and with its salinity to continue it wholesome ; — he would 
portray freedom pervading the billows, and rolling with every wave to the shores, and trace its 
workings upon the compacted continents and scattered islands comprehended within its embrace. 
TIad he the ability, he would observe that this renovating and regenerating spirit would rise, by 
exhalation, into the atmosphere, and impart some of its qualities ; — that it would impregn the 
clouds, and descend in rains and dews ; — that it would enter the vegetables and anim;ds 
which constitute the food of the human race ; — and that, finalUy, the frame of man him- 


self would be gradually so modified and mended by it, that at length even the sable and 
sayage tribes dwelling in the tracts bordering on the Senegal, the Gambia, and the Congo, shall 
lay aside their ferocity, and enjoy, as we ourselves do, Libert? under the goidance of the 

" It does not occur to me that much more remains to be said. It may however, be sohcited 
after this testimony of our allegiance that leave be granted us to depart, that the brilliant 
assemblage now present, may join their friends and fellow-citizens, occupied during the time 
we have been here, in processions and rejoicings on shore, and who anxiously wait the commu- 
nication of the message you may vouchsafe to authorise. 

" I pronounce this connection — Blessed ; for perpetu;d ;md incalculable will be its benefits.'' 

After which Mr. Golden made his communication, &c. &ic. 





The following Letter was addressed by Doctor Coventry, of Utica, to his Honor, the Mayor of 
New York. 

To THE Honorable the Mayoy, Recorder, and Corporation of the City of New York. 

" Gentlemen, 

" Havina; been deputed by our fellow-citizens of the West, we beg permis- 
sion to join with you in celebrating the completion of a work, which has elevated the character 
of our common country, and which will remain a triumphant trophy, to all the friends of free 
institutions, of what freemen can accomplish, when their energies are conducted by knowledge 
and real patriotism ; a work which, by uniting the Lakes to the Ocean, within our country, has 
burst the barrier of the mountains, removed every pretence for sectional jealousy, and created 
a bond which the hand of time cannot sever. The Erie Canal insures to us a reward for 
industry, to our posterity an antidote for idleness ; to the future inhabitants, the fertile lands of 


the West ; the incalculable blessings of law, religion, morality and virtue ; the legitimate off- 
spring of knowledge and industry. Nor is it, in our estimation, the least valuable of our 
acquired privileges, to have in the future, our prosperity closely identified with that of this 
City ; our connexion with which has always been our proudest boast ; the value of which 
privilege we have but lately learned justly to appreciate ; for in this place we were first taught 
to believe, that man might live in mass and continue virtuous. We have witnessed (and we 
confess with wonder) that an immense population may pass a day in rejoicing and festivity, and 
exhibit a self-respect that forbade even the appearance of vice and depravity. Who, in former 
times, ever witnessed a scene similar to that of the fourth instant, without observing a single 
instance of inebriation, or hearing a sound that would shock Ihe chastest ear. 

" A visit to your admirably conducted philanthrophic institutions filled us with admiration. 
We have seen your delinquents, as it were, snatched from pertlition and restored to a society, 
to which instead of being a curse, they may yet become valuable members. We are now 
fiilly convinced that the judicious philanthropist may convert a dense population (too often only 
the sinks of depravity) into the chosen abode of science, industry, and virtue. 

" To the enlightened and patriotic Magistracy of this respectable city, we beg leave to tender 
the acknowledgment of our sincere gratitude, for the unabated attention and unwearied exer- 
tions, to render our visit pleasant. We must be permitted most respectfully to assure the gen- 
tlemen collectively and individually, that on our return to the bosoms of our families, we bear 
with us the most lively and permanent sense of their kindness and flattering attentions, and that 
among the earlier lessons taught our children, will be to cherish an ardent friendship for 
them. By the completion of the Erie Canal, we esteem her future destiny a.s placed beyond 
the control of chance. With sentiments of esteem and respect, we are, 

■' Your obedient Servants, 

" For ond in behalf of the Western Committee. 


Xovember 10. 1825. 


/./././' L- 

J ^//- 
'//'//// -" 7//////"////^/ 

/// /fe// .s-/fpj. 


CUtj of Kew Y<jrk, Mayor's Office, JVov. 17, 
To Alexander Coventry, Esq. 


"Your letter in brhalf of tlic Committees floputerl by our fellow-citizens of the 
West, to join with iw in celebrating the completion of the Erie Ciui;il has been laid before the 
Common Council of the City, which has instructed me to acknowledge the receipt of your very 
friendly and flattering communication. 

" The people, and constituted authorities of the City of New York, have felt the most lively 
gratification in the opportunity aflforded them of joining with their brethren of the West in com- 
memorating the finid accomplishment of a work, which, while it affords an honorable testimony 
to the enterprise, skill, and perseverance of the people of the State, secures to them the most 
important and permanent advantages, and places their prosperity upon the firmest basis. 

" The extensive line of internal communication now completed, has more than ever identi6ed 
the interests of our City with those of the West ; and I trust that if there ever has subsisted a 
feeling of jealousy or rivalship between them, it will be lost in the practical exemplification of 
thit intimate and p dp.ible union of interests, which is now become apparent in the consumma- 
tion of the event we have just commemorated together. It is hoped that the example of what 
h,is been done by the State of New York, alone imd unassisted, may induce the sister States to 
rely upon their own vigour and resources for the completion of similar undertakings, rather than 
upon a doubtful construction of the Constitution, or the surrender of rights, the loss of which 
may more outweigh the benefits derived from their relinquishment. 


'•The reception given to the Committees was due to their individual characters — to the 
occasion which procured to us the honor of their visit — to the liberal hospitality and kindness 
with which they received the representatives of this City at Buffalo — and, above all, to those 
feelings of brotherhood which, at the moment of celebrating the union of the waters of thc- 
Lakes with those of the Atlantic, received, 1 trust, a new impulse, and produced a more vivid 
impression — a deeper conviction of the ties of interest, of patriotism, of glory, that it is hoped 
will ever subsist, not only here, but throughout every portion of our common country. 

" AVithout disclaiming those honors which are justly due to my fellow-citizens, for the manly 
decorum, the respectable propriety, with which they conducted the ceremonies of the fourth 
instant, I cannot but express my perfect conviction, that the same decorum would be exhibited, 
on an occasion appealmg so forcibly to their feelings of honorable pride, by all my fellow- 
countrymen of every community in these United States. At the same time it cannot but be 
highly gratifying to the citizens of New York, and to their constituted authorities to know, that 
you and your enlightened associates, have justly estimated the effects of their various public 
establishments, on the moral condition of the inhabitants. That these, by their humane and 
corrective influence, extensively contribute to insure domestic tranquillity, and a 
reverence for the laws, and thus greatly diminish the vices especially incident to populous cities, 
cannot for a moment be doubled. 

"In bidding you, and the respectableCommitteesin whose behalf you have spoken, farewell, 
permit me to express my own, and the feelings of those I represent on this occasion, in wishing 
lo you and your colleagues prosperity and happiness. 

" 1 cannot but cherish the pleasing hope that the bond of friendship now happily unitine our 
fellow-cifizi-ns of the South and the West, may be perpetuated by an interthange of btntfits, 
of mutuiU kmdness and confidence. 

" Mayor of the City of New York." 


November 10, 1825. 

The following Letter was received froQi Absolum Bull : — 

Honorable William Paulding, Jun. Mayor of New York. 


" On the (lay precedina; our departure from Black Rock, Judge Porter, of Niagara, 
forwarded to us four barrels of Apples, raised in his orchard, some two or three hundred yards 
from the Fails, with a request that they might be shipped on board of the Canal-boat Niagara, 
and two of them presented to the Corporation of Troy, and the other two to the Corporation of 
New York, as specimens of the fruit of that country. 

" Our boat was however so nearly loaded as to prevent our takin?; but two of the barrels, 
one of which we inve in conlormity to his request, delivered to the Corporation of Troy, imd 
the oiuer we now beg leave to preseut to you. 

" Very respectfully, 

" Your obedieut Servant, 


" For the passengers of the Niagai-a." 


Whereupon Resolved, That the present be accepted, and that the Clerk return the thanks of 
the Board lor the same. 

"New York, Nov. 1825. 

" Sir, 

" The barrel of Apples from your farm at the Falls of Niagara, which you have 
been pleased to present to the Corporation of the City of New York, have been received, and 
I have been desired by the Common Council to assure you that they have accepted your pre- 
sent with very great pleasure. 

" As an evidence of the fertility of the country, of the facility with which its valuable pro- 
ducts may be conveyed to this City, and as a commencement of an interchange of kind offices be- 
tween the citizens of the West and of New York, your present attaches to itself feelings which 
give it no ordinary value. 

" I am, 


" Your obedient Servant, 

"Augustus Porter, Esq, Niagara." 




First — " The great event which we this day celebrate — it is a proud monument of the genius 
and patriotism of a free people." 

Second — " The State of New York, uniiided and alone, has achieved a work which will 
cover her with imperishable glory." 

Third — " Our Sister States of the Union — their interest is our interest and their prosperity 
our prosperity." 

Fourth — " The Sovereignty of the States the pallacUum of our liberty, and their union the 
anchor of our RepubUcan Institutions." 

Fifth — " The President and Vice President of the United States." 

Sixth — " The Senate and House of Representatives of the United States." 

Seventh — " The Governor and Lieutenant Governor of the State." 

Eighth — " The Senate and Assembly of the State." 



Ninth — " The present Canal Commissioners and their Predecessors — they have identified 
their names with the noblest work of the age, and have secured to themselves the approving 
voice of their country." 

Tenth — " The Canal Engineers and their Associates — their science marked out the path 
from the Lakes to the Ocean. It is the pride of the Republic to call them her native sons." 

Eleventh — " The Fourth of July seventeen hundred and seventy-six, and the Fourth of July 
eighteen hundred and seventeen. Two great eras. The first gave birth to all that is wonderful 
and moral in war j the other has produced a stupendous effort of the arts of peace." 

Twelfth — " The Union of the Lakes with the Atlantic Ocean — a great link of that chain 
which is destined to bind together in one common fate all the States of the Republic." 

Thirteenth — " Our Friends and Guests." 

Fourteenth fgiven standing) — " The memory of Robert Fulton, whose mighty genius has 
enabled us to commemorate this day in a style of unparelled magnificence and grandeur." 














' Ye shades of ancient heroes ! Ye who toiled 
'Through long successive ages to build up 
' A laboring plan of state ; behold at once 
' The wonder done !" 



, (,(- 

4 I 


TiBvr .ni]ff Tima vulmjub of bi^ck ihjchijf'Ilosii ■jnara 'ocaj-nf 



In collecting and arranging for publication, in order to secure, as far as possible, from the ravages 
of time, or the hazard of accident, the various ot&cial documents connected with a celebration, 
unrivalled, it is believed, both in extent and splendor, it seems befitting that a separate Memoir 
should be drawn up, which shall combine, in one succinct view, all the leading particulars from 
the commeQcement to the conclusion. But to perform this duty with a due regard to accuracy 
of detail, combining, moreover, a sufficient quantum of descriptive matter to render it interesting, 
without swelling the Narrative to a much greater length than could be wished, is a task difficult, 
if not imp 

It is thought, however, that even prolixity may be pardoned, when we consider the magni- 
tude of the work, and the joy and enthusiasm spontaneously manifested by that people by whose 
resources and energies it has been accomplished — the people of a single state, in the fiftieth 
year of its independence, unaided and alone, without foreign revenue, or the imposition of 
oppressive exactions by the Government. Nor was this joy ill-timed or excessive. For a 
single State to achieve such a victory — not only over the doubts and fears of the wary, but over 
the obstacles of nature — causing miles of massive rocks at the mountain ridse to yield to its 
power — " turning the tide of error as well as that of the Tonnewanta — piling up the waters of the 
mighty Niagara, as well as those of the beautiful Hudson — in short, causing a navigable river to 
flow with gentle current down the steepy mount at Lockport — to leap the River of Genesee 
— to encircle the brow of Irondequot as with the laurel's wreath — to march through the rich 
fields of Palmyra and of Lyons — to wend its way through the quicksands of the morass at the 
Cayuga — to pass unheeded the delicious licks at Onondaga — to smile through Oneida's verdant 
landscape — to hang upon the arm of the ancient Mohawk, and with her, after gaily stepping 


down the cadence of the Little Falls and the Cahoes, to rush to the embrace of the sparkling 
Hudson," — and all in the space of eight short years, was a work of which the oldest and richest 
nations of Christendom might well be proud. 

Intelligence having been received by the Corporation of New York, from the acting Canal 
Commissioners, that the gigantic work would be completed and prepared for navigation on the 
twenty-sixth of October, measures were immediately taken by that body, in connexion with 
the principal cities and villages along its extended line, for the celebration of the event, in a 
manner corresponding with its magnitude and importance ; and in order that our fellow-citizens 
at the West might be duly apprised of the feelings of the metropolis on the occasion, a Com- 
mittee, consisting of Alderman King and Alderman Davis, was dispatched to Buffalo, to tender 
the hospitalities of our City to the several Committees which might be appointed on the route, 
to participate in the festivities of the occasion. But to guard against the disappointment that 
might arise from any unforeseen accident, which might have retarded the work beyond the 
specified time, arrangements were made for the firing of a grand salute, to be commenced at 
Buffalo, at a given hour, and continued to New York, by guns stationed at suitable points along 
the whole intermediate distance. The Committee arrived safel}' at Buffalo, where they were 
received with a cordial welcome, and found the Canal completed, and every thing prepared for 
the commencement of the celebration. 

Early on the morning of the twenty-sixth of October, the appointed day, the village thronged 
with the yeomanry of the country, who, alive to the subject, had assembled in vast numbers to 
witness the attendant ceremonies of the departure of the first boat. At about nine o'clock the public 
procession was formed in front of the Court House, in which the various societies of mechanics 
appeared, with appropriate badges and banners to distinguish each ; the whole preceded by the 
Buffalo band, and Capt. Rathburn's Company of Riflemen, and followed by the Committees, stran- 
gers, &c. Thus formed, the procession moved through the street to the head of the Canal, where 
the boat, Seneca Chief, elegantly fitted, was in waiting. Here the Governor and Lieut. Governor 
of the State, the New York Delegation, with the various Committees from different villages, 
inrbifling that of Buffalo, were received onboard, and after mutual introductions in the open air, 
Jesse Hawley, Esq. delivered an Address, brief, and peculiarly appropriate, in behalf of the 
citizens of Rochester. He was deputed " to mingle and reciprocate their mutual congratulations 
with the citizens of Buffalo on this grand epoch." The Canal, as a matter of State pride, was 
spoken of with much felicity — " A work that will constitute the lever of industry, population. 


and wealth to our Republic — a patteru for our Sifter States to imitate — an exhibition of the moral 
force of a free and enlightened people to the world." Mr. H., at the conclusion of his Address, 
pnid a tribute to "the projectors who devised, the statesmen who assumed the responsibility of 
the undertaJiing, at the hazard of their reputation, the legislators who granted the supplies, the 
commissioners who pliinned, the engineers who laid out, and the men who have executed this 
m;ignilicent work ;" — their memories are commended to posterity. To this Address a suitable 
reply w;!s made by Oliver Forward, Esq. in behalf of the citizens of Buffalo. 

Every thing being prepared, the signal was given, and the discharge of a thirty two pounder 
i'rom the brow of the terrace announced that all was in readiness, and the boats under way ! 
The Seneca Chief, of Buffalo, led off in fine style, drawn by four grey horses, fancifully capa- 
risoned, and was followi^d by the Superior, next to which came the Commodore Perry, a 
freight boat ; and the rear was brought up by the Buffilo. of Erie. The whole moved from 
the dock under a discharge of small arras from the Rifle Company, with music from the b;md, 
and the loud and reiterated cheers from the throng on the shore, which were returned by the 
companies on board the various boats. The salute of artillery was continued along from gun to 
gun. in rapid succession, agreeably to previous arrangement* ; and, in the short space of one 
hour and twenty minutes, the joyful intelligence was prochiimed to our citizens. 

The news having been communicated in the same manner to Sandy Hook, and notice of its 
reception returned to the City, the return salute was commenced at Fort La Fayette, by a national 
salute, at twenty-two minutes past eleven o'clock. After the national salute from that fortress, 
at thirty minutes past eleven o'clock, a repeating gun was dred from Fort Richmond, and followed 
at Governor's Island and the Battery, at thirty-one minutes past eleven o'clock, a. m ; and the 
sounds of our rejoicing were then sent roaring and echoing along the mountains and among the 
Highlands, back to Buff.Jo, where the answer was received in about the same time occupied by 
the sound in travelling to the Ocean Meantime, at Buffalo, the festivities proceeded. The 
boats having departed, the procession returned to the Court House, where a finished Address 
was deUvered by Sheldon Smith, Esq., after which an origin;J Ode, written for the occasion, was 
sung to the tune of " Hall Columbia." A public dinner succeeded ; and the festivities of the 
day were closed by a splendid Ball, at the Eagle Tavern, where beauty, vieing conspicuously 
with elegimce and wit, contributed to the enUvening enjoyment of the scene. 



The Seneca Chief was superbly fitted up for the occasion, and among other decorations her 
cabin was adorned with two paintings, of which the following is a description. — One was a view 
of Buffalo Harbour, a section of Lake Erie, Buffalo Creek, and its junction with the Canal, kc. ; 
the whole representing the scene exhibited at the moment of the departure of the Seneca 
Chief. The other was a classic emblematical production of the pencil. This piece, on the extreme 
left, exhibited a figure of Hercules in a sitting posture, leaning upon his favourite club, and resting 
from the severe labor just completed. The centre shows a section of the Canal, with a lock, 
and in the foreground is a full length figure of Gov. Clinton, in Roman costume ; he is supposed 
to have just flung open the lock gate, and with the right hand extended, (the arm being bare,) 
seems in the act of inviting Neptune, who appears upon the water, to pass through and take pos- 
session of the watery regions which the Canal has attached to his former dominions ; the God 
of the Sea is upon the right of the piece, and stands erect in his chariot of shell, which is drawn 
by sea-horses, holding his trident, and is in the act of recoiling with his body, as if confounded 
by the fact disclosed at the opening of the lock ; Naiades are sporting around the sea-horses in 
the water, who, as well as the horses themselves, seem hesitating, as if half afraid they were 
about to invade forbidden regions, not their own. The artist is a Mr. Catlin, miniature-portrait 
painter. Besides the paintings, the boat ciurried two elegant kegs, each with an eagle upon it. 
above and below which were the words — " Water of Lake Erie." These were filled from the 
Lake, for the purpose of being mingled with the Ocean on their arrival in New York. The 
Committee deputed by the citizens of Buffalo, and attached to this boat, was composed of the 
following gentlemen, viz. — Hon. Judge Wilkinson, Captain Joy, Colonel Potter, Major Burt, 
Colonel Dox, and Doctor Stagg. 

In addition to the boats above enumerated, was another, which, with its cargo, was more 
novel than the whole. This was " Noah's Ark," literally stored with birds, beasts, and "creep- 
ing things." She was a small boat, fitted for the occasion, and had on board, a bear, two eagles, 
two fawns, with a variety of other animals, and birds, together with several fish— not forgetting 
two Indian boys, in the dress of their nation — all products of the West. 

At Black Rock the Celebration was commenced previously to the arrival of the Seneca 
Chief. Early in the morning a very handsomely fitted boat, called the Niagara, of Black Rock, 
started down the Canal, with several respectable citizens and some distinguished guests on board.* 

* From the mouth of Buffalo Creek, the Canal runs close along the Lake shore to Black Rock, and thence 
along the Bank of Niagara River to the mouth of Tonnewanta Creek, ten miles from Buffalo, with a descent 


This boat remained at Lockport until the Seneca Chief arrived, when it fell into the rear. 
The Seneca Chief, with the Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, and the several Committees on 
board, arrived at a little after ten o'clock, when a salute was fired ; the boat remained a few 
minutes, and when she departed, hearty cheers were exchanged. In the afternoon, a number of 
gentlemen sat down to an excellent dinner, at which Wm. A. Bird, Esq. presided. A number 
of good toasts were drunk, and every thing was conducted in a manner creditable to the enter- 
prising citizens. 

AtLocKPORT — " the spot where the waters were to meet when the last blow was struck, and 
where the utility of an immense chain of locks was for the first time to be tested," the Cele- 
bration was in all respects such as to do honor to the work itself, and the patriotic feelings of 
the people. It is here that nature had interposed her strongest barrier to the enterprise and the 
strength of man. But the massive granite of the " Mountain Ridge" was compelled to yield. 
The rocks have crumbled to pieces and been swept away, and the waters of Erie flow tranquilly 
in their place. 

At sunrise, on the morning of the twenty-sixth, a salute was fired from the mountain adjoining 
the locks, and ere long the place was crowded with the citizens of the surrounding country ; many 
individuals, too, from distant parts of this state, and from other states, attended the celebration 
at this interesting place. At nine o'clock, a. m. a procession was formed, under the direction of 
General P. Whiting, assisted by Colonel S. Barton, and Major M. H. Tucker, which marched 
to the grand natural basin at the foot of the locks, where the President and Vice-President of 
the day, the Canal Commissioners and Engineers, the Visiting Committee, and several 
distinguished citizens from abroad, embarked on board the packet-boat William C. Bouck ; at 
the same time two hundred ladies were received on board the boat Albany ; the rest of the proces- 
sion embarked in the several boats lying in the Basin, This Basin, connected with the stu- 
pendous succession of locks, and the chasm which has been cut through the mountain, is one of 
the most interesting places on the route, if not in the World, and presents one of the most strik- 

of a half inch in each mile ; at the mouth of this Creek is a dam of four feet six inches, and the Canal enters 
the pond formed by this dam : — this Creek had a descent of only one foot in twelve miles, and the Canal fol- 
lows the Creek, or rather the Creek forms the Canal these twelve miles, having a tow-nath formed along its 
bank; at the end of this distance, leavmg the Creek, a deep cut commences, which extends seven and a half 
miles, in a North Easterly direction, across what is called the Mountain Ridge, with about three miles of rock, 
averaging twenty feet in depth, and a descent of a half inch in each mile, to the brow of the mountain. 


ing evidences of human power and enterprise which has hitherto been witnessed. A double 
set of locks, whose workmanship will vie with the most splendid monuments of antiquity, rise 
majestically, one after the other, to the height of sixty-three feet : the surplus water is con- 
ducted around them, and furnishes some of the finest mill-seats imaginable. A marble tablet 
modestly tells the story of their origin ; and, without that vanity, which, though frequently 
laudable, is often carried to excess, imputes their existence to our Republican institutions. 

When the grand salute from Buffalo East, had passed, the boats commenced ascending through 
the locks ; and during their ascension they were greeted by a continued discharge of artillery, 
and the cheers of hundreds of joyous citizens. When the boats had ascended, the Throne of 
Grace was addressed by the Reverend Mr. Winchell ; after which an appropriate Address, "such 
a one as the great event deman'ied," was deUvered by J. Birdsall, Esq. After the Address the 
boat started for Tonnewanta Creek. The cannon used on the occasion were those with which 
Perry conquered upon Erie — the gunner was a Lieutenant who had belonged to the army of 
Napoleon — and the leader of the band was the cabin-boy of Ca])tain Riley, who sulTcred « ith 
him in his Arabian captivity. During the pa.ssage the company were introduced to the venerable 
Enos Boughton, of Lockport, the pioneer of the Western District — the man who planted the 
first orchard, and built the first framed barn West of Utica ! I^he procession of boats halted at 
Pendleton, where it was joined by the boat from Buffalo, having on board the Governor. Lieut. 
Governor, and the Committees from New York, Albany, and Buffalo, and several other boats. 
The company then returned to Lockport, where they were received by a discharge of artillery. 
A well-provided table was spread at the Washington House, to which the guests and citizens 
repaired. — D. Washburn, Esq., presided, assisted by Messrs. E. Boughton, H. W. Campbell, 
A. Lexton, and B. Barton, as Vice-Presidents. 

Night set in before the expedition left the rugged scenery of Lockport ; but continuing on 
their way the boats were welcomed at Hollev, on the morning of the twenty-seventh, by the 
firing of cannon, and other testimoniols of joy. After an Address, the Committee received the 
congratulations of a number of ladies and gentlemen. At nine o'clock they reached Brockport, 
where similar ceremonies were observed. The bank of the Canal was for some distance Uned 
with spectators, who received the Committees with the most enthusiastic huzzas, and the dis- 
charge of cannon. 

At Newport, (Orleans County,) the inhabitants rejoiced in the jubilee on the twenty-sixth 
ultimo, and expressed their feelings on the occasion by the usual demonstrations. A procession 


/^ M '^ ^ 


was form°f1 at Sirkels' Hotol, iind^r the direction of Mr. W Hopkins, Marshal of the dny, which 
moved to the school-tiouse, where a large and respectable audience were highly interested with 
a pertinent and excellent address by G. vV. Fleming, Esq. The procession was again formed, 
and returned to the Hotel, where a goodly number of gentlemen partook of a superb dinner. 
After the cloth was removed several patriotic toasts were drunk, accompanied with the discharge 
of artillery. But the patriotism of the citizens was not exhausted on this occasion ; and, on the 
following day, the procession of boats was received with a hearty welcome. 

At Rochester, too, a rich and beautiful town, which, disdaining, as it were, the intermediate 
grade of a village, has sprung from a hamlet to the lull grown size, wealth, and importance of a 
city, the interestin" period wis c-ilebrated in a mann?r equally creditable to the country and 
Decision. There w;is considerable rain at Rochester on the day of the Celebration ; yet such 
was the enthusiasm of the p 'opie, that at two o'clock, eight handsome uniform companies were 
in arras, and an imme-nse concoursi- of people had assembled. The companies were formed in 
Lne upon the Canal, and on the approach of the procession of boats from the West commenced 
firing a feu de joic, which was continued until they arrived at the aqueduct,* where the boat 
called the "Young Lion of the West,'.' was stationed to " protect the entrance." The Pioneer 
boat on approaching was hailed from the Young Lion, and the following dialogue ensued : — 

Question. — Who comes there ? 

^ns^-er. — Your Brothers from the West, on the waters of the great Lakes. 
Q. — By what means have they been diverted so far from their natural course 1 
Ji. — By the channel of the Grand Erie Canal. 

Q. — By whose authority, and by whom, wiis a work of such magnitude accomplished ? 
Jl. — By the authority and by the enterprise of the patriotic People of the State of New 

* After descending: the Locks before mentioned, at Lockpor', the Canal takes an Easterly direction, aboirt 
one to three miles South of the Alluvial Way, or Ridge Road, with the descent of a half inch in each mile to 
the Genesee River, at Rochester — sixty-three miles ; in this dist<ince it passes over several aqueducts and deep 
ravines, and arrivmg at the Genesee, crosses over that river in a stone Aqueduct of nine arch=s, eai-h of fifty feet 
span, and two other arches and aqueducts of forty feet each, one on each side of the river, over theAlillCauah 



; H€Pe the " YoUng Lion" gave way, and " the brethren from the West" were permitted to enter 
the spacious basin, at the end of the aqueduct. The Rochester and Canandaigua Comraitteeg 
of Congratulation then took their places under an arch surmounted by an eagle, and the Seneca 
Chief, having the Committees on bo;ird, being moored. General M itthews, and the Honorable 
John C. Spencer, ascended the deck and oflfered to the Governor the congratulations of the 
citizens of their respective villages, to which an animated and cordial reply was given. The 
gentlemen from the West then disembarked, and a procession was formed, which repaired to 
the Presbyterian Church, where an appropriate prayer was made by the Rev. Mr. Penny, and 
an address pronounced by Timothv Childs, Esq. The address of Mr. Childs was an able and 
eloquent performance, clothed with " words that breathe, and thoughts that burn." It was 
listened to with almost breathless silence, and greeted at its close with three rounds of animated 
applause. After the address, the company repaired to Christopher's Mansion House, partook 
-of a good dinner, and drunk a set of excellent toasts. General Matthews presided, assisted 
by Jesse Hawley and Jonathan Childs, Esqrs. At half-past seven, the time fixed for the 
departure of the guests, the company reluctantly rose from a board where the most generous 
sentiments were given and received with unequalled enthusiasm, and the Governor and the 
several Committees were escorted to the Basin, and embarked amidst the congratulations of their 
fellow-citizens. The celebration was concluded with a grand ball, and a general illumination; and 
nothing occurred to mar the pleasure of the day. The following gentlemen embarked in the 
"Young Lion of the West," as a Committee for New-York, viz. — Elisha B. Strong, Levi Ward, 

O. V. T. Leavett, Wm. B. Rochester, Hulbert, A. Reynolds, A. Strong, R. Beach, E. Johnson, 

and E. S. Beach, Esquires. 

Palmyra. — The expedition arrived atPalmyra, on Friday, the twenty-eighth.* In Macedon, 
about two miles west of this village, an arch had been erected over the Capal, the night pre- 

* After passing the Genesee at Rochester, turning a little to the South, the Canal receives a navigable 
Feeder, or branch Canal, from the river above the Rapids and Falls, two miles in length, and turns Eastward, 
two miles, to a Lock of seven feet four inches descent : thence level a quarter of a mile, to a Lock of seven feet 
four inches descent : thence level a quarter of a mile, to a Lock of seven feet four inches descent ; thence level 
half a mile, to a Lock of seven feet four inches descent : thence level eight and a half miles, to a Lock of eight 
feet descent, passing by Pittsford: thence level one mile, over the high embankment at Irondequot, and passing 
on the same level fourteen miles, to a Lock of ten feet descent in the weH part of Palmyra : thence level three- 
quarters of a mile to a Lock descent of teu feet : thence level twelve miles, passmg an Aqueduct over Mud Creek, 


viously, by Judge Hallett, who has exchanged his pleasant retreat on the borders of the Ontario, 
for a more conspicuous seat on the line of the Erie Canal. On one side of the arch was written, 
" Clinton and the Canal," and on the other side, " Internal Improvements." They were 
addressed, in behalf of the citizens of the village, by Judge Hallett, to whom his Excellency- 
made an appropriate reply. The procession then proceeded to the Hotel, and partook of an 
(Excellent break'ast, tvhich had been prepared by Mr. St. John. They departed thence at nine 
o'clock, A. M., reaching Newark at eleven, a. m. Here they received the greetings of the yeo- 
manry of the surrounding country. 

Lyons. — This is a delightful village, and the shire town of the county of Wayne. The 
expedition approached its confines at about two o'clock, p. m., and was received under a dig- 
charge of artillery.* A procession was formeil, which repaired to the principal hotel, where 
congratulatory addresses were reciprocated, and a dinner provided. At tliis place an address 
was made to the committee by a deputation, consisting of thirty individuals, from the village of 
Geneva. They departed from Lyons at four o'clock, p. m., being saluted with cannon, and 
cheered by huzzas. 

At Clyde, (formerly called the " Block House, "t) near the Western verge of the Cayuga 
Marshes, refreshments were provided, and a mutual interchange of rejoicings took place. Pro- 
ceeding onwards the procession entered MontezomaJ at half-past ten o'clock, p. m. The town 

above the village of Palmyra, and passing the villaje, to three Locks of eight feet descent each. The " navig- 
able feeder" noticed above, euables boats from the Canal to ascend the Genesee River from seventy to ninety 
miles above Rochester. 

* From the Locks, after passing Palmyra, the Canal runs level six miles to Mud Creek, above the village 
of Lyons, to a Lock of ten feet descent, and a large stone .\queduct of three arches, of thirty feet span each, 
over the Creek. Thence level four and a half miles, lo the village of Lyons, and a Lock of six feet. 

t Leaving Palmyra, the Canal runs level four and a half miles to a Lock of seven feet descent : thence 
level four miles to the village of Clyde, and a Lock of five feet descent. 

% From Clyde to this place, the Canal runs level five miles, to the Western edge of the great Cayuga 
Marshes, and a Lock of nine feet descent, to the level of the water of .Seneca Piiver : thence level through the 
Canal as formed in the Marshes, and thronsh the waier of the River, six and a half miles to Montezuma, on 
the East side of the Seneca River, and a Lock of seven feet ascent, the first lirom Lake Erie. 


was handsomely illuminated, and a display of fire works was given on their approach. Over 
the. lock was a verv pretty illuminated arch, having, on one side, the ins(Ti|>lion, " De IVitt Clin- 
ton and Internal Improvements." On the reverse, " Cnion of the East and Hest." At uiidiiight 
they reached Bulkville, and fouml the place brillianlly illuminated. 

At Fort Bvron, the dawn of the twcaty-sixt') was ushered in by the firing of cannon. A 
few minutes past ten, the cannon at Clyde and Montezuma announced the completion of the 
Canal ; — the intelligence was sent on by the cannon at Port Byron, and in one hour and thirty- 
three minutes, the sound was returned from New York. A procession was formed at one 
o'clock, which proceeded to the dry dock. On their return, the citizens sat down to a dinner, 
served up in tine style. Among the articles which graced the table, was a fat ox, roasted 
whole. R. Watson, Esq.. presided, assisted by C. Reed and H Uathbone, Esqrs. The 
Reverend Mr. Gibbs officiated as Chaplain. On Ihe removal of the cloth the company was 
br efly and appropriately addressed by C. Reed, Esq., after which many excellent toasts were 
given. Preparations were also continued for giving a proper reception to the pioneer boats, and 
conferring due honors upon their passengers. The ladies, always patriotic, were among the 
foremost in their exertions on the occasion. As the arrival was necessarily in the evening, a 
ball room was handsomely decorated, and from thirty to forty ladies, arrayed in their sweetest 
smiles and most beautiful attire, aw.iited the happy moment when they could " trip the light 
fantastic toe," with the expected strangers. The bridge was superbly decorated. An arch was 
sprung its whole length, surmounted with evergreens, and gracefully festooned with the twining 
ivy, and intertwined with flowers of beautiful and various dies. A large, and well executed 
transparency exhibited the following inscription : — "July 4, 1817 " — '' Congratulations of the 
Village of Port Byron, October 29, 1825." The boats from the West were welcomed at the 
bridge by vollies of musketry, and a handsome display of fire works. When they departed, an 
illuminated b-illoon was sent up, which rose majestically, and took an easterly direction, along 
the line of the Can d. A beacon was constantly blazing on the high hill south of the village, and 
the principal buildings were handsomely illuminated. 

At Weedsport, the company from the West were also greeted by a splendid illumination, and 
the firing of artillery. The Governor, Lieutenimt Governor, and the several Committees were 
escorted to Hanford's, where they partook of refreshments, and received the congratulations of 
the citizens of Auburn and Weedsport, through the Committees of those places, to which the 


Governor replied, anH expressoH the high satisfaction which his friends and himself CTperienccd 
at their reception. At this place arrangements had been made for the celebration ; but it did not 
take place, in consequence of an unfortunate accident, by which two valuable young men lost their 
lives. Shortly after the landing of the gentlemen from the VVest, a twenty-four pounder was 
accidently discharged, imd Mr. Remington and Mr. Whitman, who were acting as gunners, were 
instantly kdled. 

Syracuse. — The floating procession reached this place at two o'clock, p. m., of the twenty- 
ninth * A very large concourse of citiz»ins had assembled to greet their arrival. The Honorable 
JosHCA FoRMAN, in behalf of the Syracuse Committee, addressed, in highly appropriate terms, 
the distinguished guestJ on board. He was replied to by Governor Chnton, in his usual felici- 
toiis style. The guests were then escorted to VViHiston's .\lausiijn House, where a lai^e number 
partook of an excellent dinner, and drunk many good toasts. Immediately after dinner the guests 
were escorted to the boat, which proceeded on her vovige, under the discharge of cannon. 
Judge Forman here joined the Committees as a representative of the village of Syracuse to 
Tsew York. 

Manlius. — The citizens of Manlius and its vicinity, celebrated the event in a praise-worthy 
manner. At an early hour, a fine battalion of artillery assembled at Fayetteville, under the com- 
m:uid of Colonel Thos. iVloseley, and m;irched to Manlius, whore at twelve o'clock, salutes were 
fired, &c. The citizens in procession, preceded by the artillery, then marched to the house of 
D. B. Bickford, where they fared sumptuously. The company, in the mean time, were 
addressed in handsome terms, by N. P. Randall, Esq. Silvanus Tonsley, Esq., presided. 

* From Port Byron, the Canal runs level one and a half miles and a Lock of nine feet ascent ; tlience level 
four miles to Buckville, and a Lock of nine feet ascent, with aii Aqueduct over Owasco Creek, of four arches, 
twenty feet each ; thence level to Jordan, a Lock of eleven feet ascent, and a stone Aqueduct of three arches 
over Skaneateles outlet: thence level twelve miles to a Lock of eleven feet descent, and a stone .Aqueduct 
of two arches, thirty feet each, over Otisco Creek : thence level seven miles, passmg by Geddesville, to a Lock 
of sis feet descent : thence level, passing by Syracuse, and over Onondaga Creek, by a stone .\queduct of four 
arches, thirty feet span each, one and a quarter mile to a Lock of six feet ascent. At this place (Syracuse) there 
is a lateral Canal, or side cut, of one mile and a half, leading down to the old village of Saliaa. There 
are caoacious Basins at each end. This Canal is to be connected with Oneida Lake, and thence through the 
Oswego Canal with Lake Ontario. 


assisted by W. P. Haunton, Esq. Nothing occurred to cloud in the least the festivities of 
the daj.* 

Rome. — The proceedings at this place on the twenty-sixth, were of a singular character, 
partaking of joy and sorrow, of chagrin and satisfaction. It will be remembered that the inha- 
bitants of Rome contended for the location of thi- Cnnal through their village, instead of the 
route finally determined on, not so much as a matter of justice to them, as one of expediency and 
economy. Their hopes were frustrated, and they have never ceased to feel that they have 
been dciilt by unjustly ; and to manifest these feelings, they commenced their celebration by form- 
ing a procession in front of the hotel, at eleven o'clock, a. m ; uniform companies of citizen- 
soldiers preceded— immediately after them followed a black barrel (filled with water from the 
old Canal, which passes through Rome,) supported by four men — the citizens followed ; and in 
this order, with muffled drums, they marched to the new Canal, into which they poured the 
contents of the black barrel. They then, in quick time, returned to Starr's Hotel, where they 
put aside their ill humor, and joined with heart and hand in celebrating the event which had on 
that day congregated thousands of their fellow-citizens. An excellent dinner was provided, at 
which Dr. A. Blair presided, assisted by S. B. Roberts, Esq. as Vice-President. Many toasts 
were given, indicating that the people of Rome, however much they have been disappointed, 
are not behind any of their fellow-citizens, in appreciating the value of the Can;J as a state and 
national work, and in giving honor " to whom honor is due." On Sunday the thirtieth, the boats 
from Lake Erie reached Rome, when the citizens visited the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, 
and the gentlemen on board, reciprocated the usual courtesies, and after a visit of an hour, the 
boats departed. 

At Utica, the boats arrived at half past twelve o'clock on Sunday the thirtieth. f The Com- 
mittees and hii^h officers in company, were received by a deputation from the village corporation, 

* Five miles North West of Manlius, on the Seneca turnpike, is the village of Orville, which has the benefit 
of a side cut from the Canal. .'Vt the village of Chittenmgo, also, in the town of Sullivan, there is a lateral 
Canal of a mile and a half, with four locks of six feet each, opening a water communication to the quarries 
of gypsum and water-lime. 

t At the distance of one mile from Syracuse, (the place of our last note but one), the Canal ascends two 
Locks of ten feet each. Here commences the long level of sixt) -seven and a half miles, passing through the towns 


and conducted to church in the afternoon. At eight o'clock on Monday morning, a procession, 
the most numerous ever known in Utica, including several well- uniformed and disciplined corps 
of troops, moved from i\Ir. Shepherd's Hotel to ihe Academy, under the orders of Col. Smith, 
where a congratulatory address was delivered by Judge Bacon, in behalf of the citizens of 
Utica, to which his Excellency Governor Clinton repHed. Of the manner in which they were 
delivered, it was observed, that Judge Bacon, who always does such things well, was never more 
happy. Governor Clinton was sensibly affected, and delivered his reply with much, feeling. 
The address expressed in a forcible and eloquent manner the congratulations of the citizehs of 
Utica, and paid appropriate and merited compliments to all those who had planned, or assistec^ 
in the execution of the stupendous work. The reply of the Governor contained a well turned 
and well merited eulogium on the Honorable Ju Ige Piatt, who, by his exertions in the 
Senate, and in the Council of Revision, ;ifforded powerful and efficient aid to the cause of the 
Canals ; and to whom, also, we were first indebted foi- the favorite and popular expression of " The 
Young Lion of the fVest." Judge Piatt and Doctor Alexander Coventry here joined the Com- 
mittees as delegates from Utica, to represent them during the remainder of the fete. 

Little Falls. — From Utica to the Little Falls,* a distance of twenty-three miles, the 
country is rich and populous; but there are no villages at which any combined or formal mani- 
festations of respect for the passing strangers, or joy for the completion of the great work, 
could be exhibited. Hundreds of the yeomanry, however, flocked to the banks of the Canal; 
and where groups were collected did not fail to send forth the cordial and loud huzza. Next to 

of Salina, in which it commences, Manliiis, Sullivan, Lenox, V'erona, Rome, kc. to Frankfort in Herkimer County, 
where it terminates, near Myers' Creek, by a Lock of ei^lit feet descent ; ou tliis long level, it passes over the 
Butternut, Limestone, Chitteningo, Canasaraga, Oneida, Wood, Oriskany, and Sadaquada Creeks, by Aque- 
ducts of various extent, having, in its course, crossed Madison and Oneida Counties, a part of Onondaga, and 
entered the County of Herkimer. 

* From the last mentioned Lock in Frankfort, the Canal runs level one mile to a Lock of eight feet descent: 
thence level half a mile to a Lock of eight feet descent : thence level two miles and a half to a Lock of eight 
feet descent, after passing an Aqueduct of two hundred feet in length : thence level a quarter of a mile, to a 
Lock of eight feet descent : thence level one mile and a half, to a Lock of nine feet descent, into a part of the 
old Canal, running through a portion of the German Flatts : thence ioilowiug that Canal one-third of a mile, 
leaving it and coulnT.a^ three miles, to a Lock of- elsriit l°et descent: thence level three miles, to the head of 
the Little Fails, w hence are five Lock=, each of eigut feet descent, m the distance of one niile. 


the Mountain Rid^e, before described, the construction of the Canal at the Little Fiills, was the 
most formidable libor executed. During some mighty convulsion of nature, the wiiters of the 
West, at a former period, evidently tore for themselves a p^issage through what previously had 
been a barrier of mountain granite. The hills rise on either side to a height of near five hundred 
feet, and at one pomt the cragged promontories approximate nearly to the toss of a biscuit. 
Through this chasm the Mohawk tumbles over a rocky bed, and falls, in the distance of half a 
mile to the depth of forty feet. The old Canal of the Inland Lock Navigation Company, was 
constructed on the north side of the Rapids, which atTords a far more favorable route. The 
Erie Canal runs upon the south side, the bed of which was excavated in the solid rock. 
The view is exceedingly wild and picturesque. Above, the rocks impend in rugged and fearful 
grandeur; while beneath, the foaming torrent of the Mohawk dashes from rock to rock, until 
it leaps into a basin of great depth, and then steals tranquilly through the rich vale extending to 
the falls of the Cahoos The village stands upon the north side, and is connected with the 
Canal by a stupendous aqueduct, thrown over the river by means of three arches, viz — an 
eliptical one of seventy feet, embracing the whole stream in an ordinary state of its waters, with 
one on each side of fifty feet span, elevating the surface of the Canal thirty feet above that of 
the river. It was already evening when the boats reached this interesting region ; but bonfires 
blazed upon the crags and brows of the mountains, and at the junction of the aqueduct with the 
Canal, they were met by a Committee, and an able address was delivered by George H. Feeter, 
Esq., to which a suitable reply was made. The party was then invited over to the village, 
where a banquet was spread at M'Kinnister's Hotel. Having tarried as long as their time would 
allow, they took their leave amidst the cheers of the citizens, and departed under a salute of 

Leaving Little Falls, and pursuing their journey in the dead of night, several of the ancient 
villages, such as Fort Plain, Palatine, iSic. were deprived of the opportunity of giving utterance 
to their feelings ; but on the morning of the first of November, which was a clear and delight- 
ful day, the people of the intermediate towns, to Schenectady, manifested great joy and enthusiasm, 
which was proclaimed by every means within their power.* 

* From the Little Falls the Canal runs level five miles, to a Lock of ei^t feet descent, in Danube : thence 
level four miles to a Lock of eight feet descent : thence level three miles and three quarters, to a Lock of seven 
feet descent, near Otsquaga Creek ; thence level three miles and a quarter, to Canajoharie Village, and a Lock 


At ScHESECTAUT, occording to the published arrangements, the boats were to have arrived 
at five o'ciock, p. m. of Tuesday. Here, however, it seems there were some " private griefs," 
which we " know not of," and which induced the pubhcation in the leading paper of that city, 
of the projet of a funend procession, or some other demonstrations of mourning, and no prepa- 
rations for the reception were made by the Corporation. Yet it does not follow that there was 
a generiJ want of good feeling ; on the contrary, news was received that the arrival would be 
some hours sooner thnn had been anticip;rted. Th« result was, that a goodly concourse of people 
were speedily assembled ; some fi jld-pieces were stationed at a suitable point to honor the stran- 
gers with a salute, and the '• College Gu:irds,'' were quickly in uniform and on duty. Thi? 
corps is formed of students in Union College, and appeared in a handsome grey uniform. At 
about three o'clock the boats hove in sight — they were wolcomed by a salute — and the literarj' 
soldiers 6red a feu de joie. The Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Conunittees were 
respectfully received by the principal citizens, and conducted to Given's Hotel, where a well 
provided table was spread, and the company pirtook of a dinner, at which Mr. De Graaf pre- 
siilcd There were no cheers, nor, on the contrary, any audible murmurs. On the whole it 
was rather a grave reception. At four o'clock th > company re-embirked, and proceeded on their 
way. A drizzling rain c:ime on ; but the College Guards, who accompanied the boats to the 
street which leads to the buildin:^ of this flourishing University, were not unprovided with a 
defence ; each drew a blanket from his kn.ipsack, and in a moment the graceful youths were 
metamorphosed in their apparel to the appearance of a band of Indians. 

The shades of night set in soon after the boats crossed the aqueduct leading over the 
Mohawk, into the county of Saratoga. The night was dark and dreary, and a view of the 
sublime scenery of the Cahoos Kails, and the fomid ible range of locks by which the Canal 
descends into the vale of the Hudson, was entirely lost, much to the regret of those who were 
not already familiar with that region of rich and picturesque scenery. At two o'clock, a. m.. 

of six feet descent : thence level twelve miles, to a Lock of seven feet descent, in Charleston : thence level 
four miles and a half, to the bank of Schoharie Creek, and a Lock of six feet descent: thence crossing the 
Creek by a dam three-quarters of a mile, to a Lock of four feet descent, in Florida : thence level three mUes, 
to a Lock of eight feet descent : thence level five miles and a quarter, to two Locks, each of eight feet descent, 
with a small pond between them : thence level six miles, to a Lock of eight feet descent : thence level three 
miles, to a Lock of eight feet descent : thence level half a mile, to a Lock of eight feet descect, in Rotterdam ; 
thence three miles level, to the City of Schenectady. 



the boats made a halt, and da3'-light found the company at the half-way house between Troy* and 
Albany, lately, and for a long time, kept by the heroic landlady, who several years since shot a 
desperate robber, in the act of plundering her house, in the night. 

, " The dawn was overcast, the morning lowered 
" And heavily in clouds brought on tlie day 
" big with the fate" 

of multitudes who had long been anticipating the pleasure of a visit to the capital of the State, 
and a participation in the festivities of the day. A cold north-west wind, however, soon sprung 
up, sweeping the mists before it, and rolling away the clouds. The consequence was, that even 
at this distance from the city, the indications betokened a large assemblage. 

The company remained at this spot until near ten o'clock, and, in the mean time, an excel- 
lent and plentiful breakfjst was served up by the landlord. A message was also received at an 
early hour, from Major Talcott, commanding the United States Arsenal at Gibbonsville, express- 
ing. his regret that the boats should have passed that station so many hours before the expected 
time, as it had been his intention to honor them with a salute. An answer was returned with an 
invitation for the Major and his Officers to join the expedition, which was promptly accepted. 
Departing for Albany, it was soon found that there was a general ingathering in the direction of 
the ancient capital. The banks of the Canal were lined with people, and the roads were 
filled with horses and carriages, galloping and whirling towards the scene of the anticipated fes- 

Albany. — At the lock above the mansion of the Patroon (General Stephen Van Rensselaer) 
the boats were met by Alderman Wyckoff, and Assistant Alderman Hone, of the Committee of 
the New York Corporation, who were received on board, and the boats proceeding rapidly on, 

* la Wetervleit, opposite the city of Troy, there is a lateral Canal, or side-cut, which descends by means of 
two Locks of eleven feet each, into the Hudson, and thus opens that flourishing city to a full participation of 
the beaefits of both tlie Erie and Champlain Canals. 


arrived at the last lock at half-past teu, a. m.* Twenty-four pieces of cannon were planted on 
the pier, from which a grand salute was fired as the boats passed from the Canal into the basin, 
down which they proceeded, towed by yawls manned by twenty-four masters of vessels, and 
cheered onward by bands of music, and the huzzas of thousands of rejoicing citizens, who 
crowded the wharves, the south bridge, the vessels, and a double line of Canal boats, which 
extended through the whole length of the basin. Having passed the sloop lock, they returned 
up the river as far as the south bridge. Here the company were received by the city committee, 
and escorted to Rockwell's Mansion House, where congratulations were exchanged. A pro- 
cession was then formed under the direction of Maj. Taylor, Capt. Bradt, and W. Esleeck, Esq. 
in the following order : — Twenty-four cartmen, with carts loaded with western produce, each 
with a flag designating the articles conveyed ; — cartmen on horseback, preceded by their 
Marshal, R. M'Clintock ; — a band of music ; Sheriff and Staff ; Corporation ; Governor and 
Lieutenant Governor ; Canal Commissioners ; Engineers and Assistants ; Collector of Tolls ; 
Revolutionary Ofiicers and Cincinnati ; Surveyor of the Port ; Committees ; Judicial Officers 
of the State and of the United States ; Secretary of State and Surveyor-General ; Attorney 
General ; Comptroller ; Treasurer ; Adjutant General and Judge Advocate General ; Officers 
of the Army and Navy ; Chamber of Commerce ; Military Association ; Societies ; Strangers 
and Citizens. The procession passed through several of the principal streets, to the Capitol. 
Here the exercises commenced in the Assembly Chamber, with an appropriate prayer. An 

* The Canal contiuues the same level from Schenectady, four miles, through Niskayuna, to an Aqueduct 
over tlie Mohawk River, seven hundred and forty-eight feet in length, between the abutments, supported by 
sixteen piers, twenty-five feet above the river ; and immediately after passing the Aqueduct there are three Locks, 
each of seven feet descent, in Half Moon, a few rods below Alexander's Mills, and the Bridge : thence level two 
miles, to a Lock of seven feet descent : thence level one mile and a half to a Lock of seven feet descent : thence 
level Uiree miles and a half, to a Lock of seven feet descent : thence level five miles, passing over the Mohawk 
River by an Aqueduct of nineteen hundred and eighty-eight feet in lengtli, between the abutments, resting on 
twenty-six piers : thence about three miles to four Locks, of eight feet descent each, in Watervleit : thence level 
one mile and a quarter to a little below the Cahoos Falls, to two Locks, of nine feet descent each : thence one 
mile and a quarter level, to three Loclcs, and a descent of twenty-six feet : thence level one mile and a half, to 
seven Loi-ks, of eight feet descent each ; here a Feeder comes in from the Mohawk, and connects the Erie with 
the Champlain Canal, and there are two Locks, of eleven feet descent each : thence level seven miles, to a Lock 
of eleven feet descent : thence level one mile and a half, to a point in the rear of the old State Arsenal, where 
tliere is a small Basin, and a Lock of eleven feet descent, to the tide waters of the Hudson, and into the great 
Basin, in the City of Albany. The Locks are ninety feet long between the gates, fifteen feet wide, built of the 
most durable stone, well cut and coursed, and laid in vrater-lime. The courses are never less than eight inches 
faces, very few less than twelve, and from that to thirty inches. 


ode was then sung, written for the occasiony by John Aug. Stone, of the Albimy Theatre. The 
vocal arrangements were under the direction of Mr. Harris, Professor of Music, aided by the 
orchestra of the Theatre. Philip Hone, Esq. in behalf of the Corporation of New York, 
then rose and addressed the Chairman and the assembled citizens. He glanced rapidly at the 
history of the great work, from its conception to its completion, and in conclusion tendered the 
congratulations of the Corporation of New York, and declared his instructions to invite the 
Corporation of Albany, together with the several Committees then assembled, to proceed with 
the bo its to the city which he had the honor in part to represent. In performing this office, he 
assured them they would be received as welcome guests, and requested to unite with the muni- 
cipal authorities in the celebration of the joyful event. 

When Mr. Hone had concluded, Wm. James, Esq., of .'Albany, in behalf of his fellow- 
citizens, delivered a congratulatory address. He made a happy ;dlusion to the sensations which 
the completion of the Canal is so well calculated to excite in the bosom of every intelligent 
citizen, "an event which associates our respective interests with the glory of our country." 
The congratulations of the patriotic citizens of Albany, to whose early influence and efficacious 
assistance, we are so much indebted for the commencement and progress of the great work, 
were next expressed, and a cordial invitation extended to the stranger- guests to partake in cele 
bratingthe auspicious event. Mr. J. then directed the attention of his gratified auditors to those 
considerations to which a contemplation of the grand work is well calculated to lead the 
enlightened mind — the resources which it had developed, and which it would continue to call " 
into action — its general benefit, " embracing in its progress the prosperity and welfare of all" — 
and its influence and consequences upon mankind. Allusion was also made to the state of the 
western country, " when forests covered the sites of the now splendid towns of Utica, Geneva, 
Can mdaigua, and Buffalo," and " when the dismal and savage trackways led through forbidding 
forests, where now stand the flourishing towns of Syracuse, Auburn, Rochester, and many other 
places, celebrated for the elegance and refinement of their inhabitants, the grandeur of their 
scenery, seats of learning." &,c. ; and a happy contrast was drawn between their former and pre- 
sent state. A glowing picture of the future greatness and happiness of our western and north- 
western territories was presented ; and the glory of the nation, its territory, its institutions, its 
wealth, its liberty, and its spirit in local and general improvement, successively furnished themes 
for the imagination of the orator ; who acquitted himself in a manner truly praise-worthy and 
honorable to those citizens who selected him to deliver their sentiments. 


Mr. James having concluded his address, the Committees from the West arose, and with them 
Lieutenant Governor Tallmadge, who returned their acknowledgments for the kind manner in 
which they had been received, in his usual forcible, happy, and eloquent manner. 

The Assembly Chamber, in which these exercises took place, was tastefully decorated fof 
the occasion. On the right of the Speaker's chair, hung a portrait of George Clinton, and on 
his left that of De Witt Clinton. Over the chair hung a full-length portrait of " The Father of 
his Country," surmounted by the bird of victory grasping his thunder. The benediction was 
pronounced by the Reverend Mr Lacy ; after which the procession again formed, and moved 
through various streets, to the bridge, which was superbly decorated, to partake of a col- 

At the west end of the bridge was the entrance, composed of five pointed gothic arches, 
rising above each other on each side of the grand centre arch. Those on the extreme 
right, and left, were twelve feet in height, aiM six feet in width, and presented a full view to the 
spectator. The two intermediate arches on either side of the centre, were fourteen feet in 
height by seven feet in width, and formed an angle with the others, thus showing a kind of 
perspective, and causing the centre arch to recede about six feet. The arches were supported 
by two pilasters, cappei with gothic turrets, and the pannels decorated with delicate evergreens, 
in a style corresponding to that hij;hly orn ord'^r. The centres of all the arches termi- 
nated in richly gilded and appropriate orii.iments. The back ground of all, except the centre, 
was filled with shrubbery, presenting to the view a resemblance to the entrance of a garden. 
Piissing through the arch were found lines of shrubber}' fancifully arranged on both sides of the 
bridge, and forming curves from the arch to the draw-bridge. Standards, bearing the national 
arms, waved on both sides of the bridge. At the four corners of the draw bridge were erected 
four masts, forty feet in height, decorated with evergreens, and rigged with flags, arranged as 
sails, emblematical of the terminatton of the Canal, and of the commencement of river naviga- 
tion. Proceeding onward, the guests passed under three circular arches, the centre one of 
which bore the words, " Grand Erie Canal ;" that on the left hand was inscribed, "July 4th, 
1817 ;" and that on the right, " October "^6th, 1826." They were all ornamented in a similar 
manner, with evergreens, and formed the entrance to an immense hall, covered with an awning, 
and furnished with two lines of tables, each one hundred and fifty feet in length, and sufficient 
for the accommodation of six hundred guests. This terminated in an elegant circular marquee, 
snrmouted with the national flag, calculated to contain about sixty persons. One part of the 


design struck the writer as remarkably beautiful. The two lines of tables were placed at such 
distances from the sides of the bridge, as to allow the marshals to conduct the procession, formed 
in double files, up the centre avenue between the table, to the marquee, and there separating to 
the right and left countermarching to their respective seats at the table ; thus placing the mar- 
•shals in such a situation as to allow them to form the procession on retiring, in the same order as 
it entered, without any change of companions OD the part of the guests. 

The table was filled with a rich collation, consisting of the most choice viands of our cli- 
mate, with a plenty of the " ruby bright" wines of the best vineyards of Europe. The repast 
was prepared by Mr. Thomas Welch. 

The late Lieutenant Governor Taylor, and Judge Spencer, presided at the table, assisted 
by Martin Van Buren, Benjamin Knower, John Townsend, Allen Brown, Teunis Van Vechten, 
Elisha Jenkins, Ebenezer Baldwin, and Richard 1. Knowlson, Esquires. 

In the evening the Capitol and Theatre were brilliantly illuminated. In front of the Capitol 
was a large transparency, with the motto — " Peace and Commerce." It represented a wide 
landscape, exhibiting the varieties of field ;md meadow, hill ;md d;de. Winding its way through 
this, was a Canal, on the bosom of which were two boats, drawn by three horses each. Over 
the door, within the portico, was another transparency, representing an Eagle, with emblems of 
war and pe;w;e. Motto — " 1776." Over the stiiirway, within the great hall, as you ascend to 
the gallery, were the words — " The Grand Work is Done !" And at the head of the first flight 
of stairs, hung a broad painting of the Arms of New York, enwreathed with evergreens. The 
several Committees collected in Albany on this occasion, attended the Theatre in the evening. 
During an interval between the acts, a beautiful Canal scene, got up for the occasion by Mr. 
Gilfert, was exhibited and warmly cheered. The representation of locks, canals, &c., with boats 
and horses actually passing, was admirably done. Between the pieces which composed the 
evening's entertainment, an ode was recited by Mr. Barrett, in his happiest manner, written for 
the occasion by James Ferguson, Esq. Thus terminated a day which will long be remembered 
in Albany as the memorable second of November, eighteen hundred and twenty-five. 

Thursday morning arrived, and a more beautiful day never dawned upon our land. It seemed 
as though a benignant Providence, smiling upon the labors and triumphs of human genius and 
enterprise, had purposely chained the storms in their caverns. The hour of nme was appointed 


for the departure of the fleet, but by some unavoidable delays it was near ten before every 
thing was prepared. In the meantime the city and surrounding country poured forth its popu- 
lation in immense numbers, to view the beautiful spectacle. There were by thousands and 
thousands more people out than on the preceding day. The docks, stores, and vessels, along 
the whole river in front of the city, presented thick masses of people. The several steam-boats 
formed in their proper order, gorgeously decorated, were ranged in a line, and a brisk north- 
west wind caused the gay banners and streamers to flutter in the air, so as to be seen to the best 
possible advantage. And the beauty of the scene was still further heightened by the large columns 
of steam rushing from the fleet, rising majestically upwards, and curling and rolling into a thou- 
sand fantastic and beautiful forms, until mingled and lost in surrounding v<apors. Every boat 
was filled with passengers, and each was supplied with a band of music. The delight, nay, 
enthusiasm, of the people, was at its height. Such an animating, bright, beauteous, and glorious 
spectacle had never been seen at that place ; nor, at that time, excelled in New York. About 
fifteen minutes before the departure of the fleet, the Chief Justice Marshall, from Troy, 
came gaily down the river, as richly decorated as the ship of the Admiral himself, having the 
Niagara, of Black Rock, in tow. On board of this boat, also, was a fine band, and a large num- 
ber of the most respectable citizens of Troy. At a given signal, the fleet was under way in a 
moment ; and the Albanians, with long and reiterated cheers, took leave of such a spectacle as 
their eyes will never more behold. 

The fleet consisted of the following steam-vessels, viz. : — The Chancellor Livingston, Capt, 
Lockwood, under the special direction of Charles Rhind. Esq., acting as Admiral, assisted by 
Commodore Wiswall, as Captain of the fleet, having in tow the elegant Canal packet-boat, " The 
Seneca Chief," of Bufialo ; the Constitution, Captain Bartholomew, having in tow the Roches- 
ter boat " Young Lion of the West." — On board of this boat, among other productions of the 
West, were two living wolves, a fawn, a fox, four racoons, and two living eagles. Noah's Ark, 
from Ararat, having the bears and Indians, fell behind, and did not arrive in Albany in season to 
be taken in tow. Nest came the Chief Justice Marshall, Captain Sherman, having in tow the 
" Niagara," from Black Rock. Then followed the Constellation, Captain Cruttenden ; the 
Swiftsure, Captain Stocking ; the Olive Branch, Captain Moore, having in tow the safety-barge, 
Matilda ; and the Richmond, Captain Cochran. The Saratoga. Captain Benson, being a small 
and swift boat, acted as a tender on the voyage from Albany — landing and taking in passengers 
from all > the boats and landing places. She sported about like a dolphin — now in the wake of 


one boat, now along side of another, and now shooting a-head of the whole, with her flags 
streaming gracefully in the breeze. 

The appearance of the fleet from the difl"erent points along the shore was gay and animating. 
As it passed down the river, the boats, constantly varying their relative positions, — the foremost 
lying by to wait for the others to come up, and all of them decorated with flags and streamers, — 
presented a grand and splendid spectacle. This was particularly the case among the group of 
islands between Albany and Coeymans ; and the scene from the Admiral's boat, as the passengers 
looked back among the islands, and along the crooked channels, was truly enchanting. Now a 
vessel in the richest attire, shot from Ijehind a copse upon some little island, — and now another 
disappeared behind a second. At times, a boat, at some distance astern, appeared to be swiftly 
darting across the river; and again, at another point could only be discovered the variegated 
flags and streamers through the intervening though scattered shrubbery, whose verdure had lost 
its freshness, and been speckled with pale red and yellow by the early autumnal frosts. And now 
again, when the broad bosom of the Hudson was unbroken from bank to bank, the whole 
squadron appeared in hue, like a fleet from the dominion of the fairies. Thousands of the in- 
habitants crowded to the shore to admire and welcome the novel procession. Signal guns were 
posted on various heights, to give notice of its approach ; and salutes from cannon or musketry 
were fired from every village. At Coeymans, New Baltimore. Kinderhook-Landing, and Cox- 
sackie, great numbers of people were assembled, who cheered the passing multitude. Indeed, 
after Alexander of Macedon had carried his arms into India, he did not descend the Indus with 
greater triumph, or make a prouder display. 

At Hudson, which is finely situated for such an exhibition, many thousands of citizens had 
collected. The shores, and the brow of Prospect Hill, were covered with people ; and the 
colonnades of the " round house," were filled with ladies, whose snow-white handkerchiefs 
fluttered briskly in the breeze. The river here expands to a breadth of nearly two miles. 
The country on both sides rises graduiJly from the river — particularly on the west, to the base 
of the Catskill Mountains. No finer view of these lofty mountains is obtained than at Hudson ; 
and when we include Mount Merino, on the eastern side of the river, with the broad sweep of 
woods, and meadows, and fields, on either side, the landscape, embracing mountain, wood, and 
water scenery, uniting at once the subhme and beautiful, is perfect. The frost had changed its 
soft and early verdure, and decked it in the richly variegated and changing livery of autumn. It 
was not viewed, however, in a cold and cheerless day, but gazed upon under the genial influence 


of a mild autumnal sun, amidst a scene of gaiety and animation which imparted life and beauty 
and sublimity to all. The Saratoga touched at the dock, where the municipal authorities were 
in waiting, hoping that the fleet would stop a short time, and allow the committees to go ashore, 
and partake of a collation which had been provided for the occasion. But time would nor per- 
mit, and the fleet passed down under a salute of artillery posted on the hills, which was answered 
from the cannon at Athens, directly opposite. 

At Catskill, a s.dute was fired from the hill behind which, and almost invisible from the 
river, this busy and thriving village is entrenched A military company was paraded on the 
point (so called), and fired repeatedly, while the boats lay to for the Saratoga to take off pas- 
sengers. The afternoon was fine, and the banners waving gracefully in the breeze, and gaily 
dancing in the sunbe;ims, presented a scene of beauty at once novel and picturesque. 

While passing Redhook Landing, where the same curiosity and interest were exhibited by 
the assembled people, dinner was announced. Alderman King presided, assisted by Alderman 
Davis, Assistant Alderman Hone, and Alderman VVyckoff, as Vice Presidents. The fare was 
sumptuous, the wines good, and many a bumper was turned off to the patriotic sentiments ehcited 
by the occasion, intermingled with national and other appropriate songs. Immediately after 
dinner, a committee from the Chancellor Livingston, (the flag ship,) was put off in a small boat, 
to pay complimentary visits to the other boats of the squadron, and the like civilities were 

Before reaching Hyde Park, evening had thrown her shadows over us ; and instead of the gay 
attire which had rendered the fleet so beautiful by day, the boats were now decorated with lights, 
each having a different number for the sake of distinction. The flag ship, the Chancellor, 
bore a great number of lanterns, arranged in the form of a triangle, and must have made a bril- 
liant appearance. And if the spectators on shore had been gratified during the day by views of 
the flotilla, the passengers on board the latter were now amply repaid by the splendor of bon- 
fires and illuminations along the shore. The first of the kind which was seen, was the mansion 
of James D. Livingston, Esq., of Hyde Park, the whole front of which was illuminated. Capt. 
Sherman, moreover, of the Chief Justice Marshall, had timely provided himself with a supply of 
rockets, which being thrown up at intervals, now sporting through the gloom like a comet, and now 
bursting and descending m showers of dazzling stars, produced a fine effect. At several point? 


along the river, bonfires were blazing, nnd the flash and roar of cannon were seen and heard, 
which were answered by cheers from the boats and the firing of cannon in return. 

As the flotilla approached Poughk'^.epsie, it was apparent that the citizens of that flourish- 
ing village were prepared to welcome it with the warmest demonstrations of joy. Upon an emi- 
nence on each side of the landings, huge signal-fires were lighted, which cast a broad red glare 
over the hills, and gleamed widely upon the waters. The effect, as seen from the water, was 
very grand. The red light bursting fitfully through the trees as the boats glided by, the human 
figures moving in every direction athwart the fires, the illumiaated buildings, the thunder of 
cannon, the brilliant moving lights of the steam-boats, all seen and heard in the silence and dark- 
ness of night, could not fiiil to make an impression on every beholder, such as will not soon be 

At Newburgh cannon were fired ; the village was partially illuminated, and a committee of 
congratulation came on board. 

At West Point, a salute of twenty-four guns greeted the arrival of tt»e first boats in the 
line ; and another of the same number was fired while the last boats were passing. In the 
meantime, great numbers of rockets were sent up ; and cheers resounded merrily, both from 
the hills and the boats. During these tokens of rejoicing, some of the boats were busily engaged 
in receiving on board the otficers, as guests of the Corporation ; and as soon as this was accom- 
plished, the whole flotilla proceeded with all expedition to New York. The guests and passen- 
gers on board now retired, and in the morning awoke opposite the city, to greet the beautiful 
dawn of a day long to be remembered in the annals of our st.ite and country. 

The long expected fourth of November — a day so glorious for the city and state, with all its 
" pomp and circumstance," came and passed ; and the incidents, like the fragments of a splendid 
vision, are yet floating, in bright and glowing masses, through the imagination. But the pageant 
was too brilliant, and the scenes too various, for the memory to retain more than certain vague 
impressions, no less beautiful than indistinct. Those who saw the magnificent scene, will at 
once admit that it cannot be painted in language ; and those who had not that happiness, must 
content themselves with the asssurance, that the best endeavours of the writer to convey to 
them an adequate idea ot its grandeur, will fail. The poet, by giving full sway to his imagina- 
tion, may perhaps partially succeed in conveying the various impressions imbibed on the 


occasion, and some detached parts of the scene might possibly be used to advantage by the 
painter who unites skill with genius. But we repeat, that the narrative, in humble prose, will 
fall short of a just representation. 

The grand fleet arrived in our waters from Albany before day-light, and came to anchor 
near the State Prison. The roar of cannon from diflerent pomts, and the merry peals of our 
numerous bells, greeted the sun as he rose in a cloudless sky. In a feiv moments aflerwards, 
signals were given by the flag ship, and the various flags, banners, and other decorations, were 
ran up as if at the sudden command of a magician. Shortly afterwards, the new and superb 
steam-boat Washington, Capt;iin E. S. Bunker, bore proudly down upon the fleet, heaving up 
the foaming billows as though she spurned the dominion of Neptune. In the language of the 
Noble Bard — 

" She walked the waters like a thin? of life, 
" And dared the very elements to strife." 

She bore the great banner of the Corporation, representing in dark figures, the arms of the city 
upon a snow-white ground. The Washington was an entirely new boat, chartered for the occa- 
sion, of large dimensions, beautiful model, and superbly finished throughout, — uniting all the 
improvements in steam-boat architecture. The design of the tafrail represented the renown 
of VV;ishington and Lafayette. The centre was a trophy of various emblems — the laurel and 
the olive — standards — swords — the balance — the caduceus of Mercury, &:c. The trophy was 
surmounted with a bald eagle. Each side of it was decorated with a bust — on the right, that of 
Washington — on the left, the bust of Lafayette. The former was crowned with the civic wreath 
and the laurel — the latter with the laurel only. The Genius of America was crowning her hero, 
and the spirit of Independence, waving the flaming torch, binding the brow of Lafayette. 
Each of these figures was attended with emblematic medallions of Agriculture and Commerce. 
The whole was based on a section of the globe, and the background was a glory from the trophy. 
The corners of the tafrail were each tilled vvith a cornucopia, which gracefully completed the 
design, on which neither painting nor gilding had been spired to enhance the effect. She ran 
along side of the Chancellor, and a Committee of the Corporation, with the Officers of the 
Governor's Guard, came on board to tender his Excellency their congratulations on his arrival 
in our waters, from those of Lake Erie. In pfrformins this duty. Alderman Cowdrey made a 
handsome and pertment address, m behalf of the Common Council, to which his Excellency 


made a reply in behnlf of himself and his associates in the great work, and the several persons 
and bodies who had been welcomed to the shores and waters of New York, and to whom the 
hospitalities of the city had been so cheerfully tendered. To the Ofticers of the Guards, 
headed by Col. Brett, the Governor also expressed his gratitude and thanks for their prompt 
attention on the occasion. 

This duty having been performed, and there being an hour to spare, the several boats entered 
their respective docks, and came to anchor at the places assigned them, to give their numerous 
passengers an opportunity to prepare for the enjoyments of the day agreeably to their various 

The escorting fleet got under way, and passed the British Sloops of War Swallow, Captaia 
Baldock, and Kingfisher, Captain Henderson, dressed for the occasion, and bearing the American 
flag in company with the cross of St. George. A salute was tired from these ships, which was 
returned from the fleet. 

Not the least pleasing of this morning scene, was the packet-ship Hamlet, Captain Candler, 
prepared by the Marine and Nautical Societies, appearing at sunrise, in the N)rth River, 
superbly dressed in the flags of various nations, interspersed with private signals, and the num- 
ber-flags of the diflerent members. She made a most splendid appearance during the whole 
day. At eight o'clock, these Societies met on board the steam boat Fulton, Captain R Bunker, 
lying at Fulton Street Wharf, (East River,) and were conveyed on board of the ship, where 
Captain J. G. Collins, assisted by his officers, took the command. Commodore Chauncey 
politely sent an oflicer and twenty men from the Navy Yard, to assist in the duties of the ship. 
And before they landed, an excellent collation, prepared for the occasion by the joint committees 
of the t^vo societies, was spread, of which all on board partook — to the number of one hundred 
and twenty-five. 

At half-past eight o'clock, the Corporation, and their invited guests, assembled in the Sessions 
Room at the City Hall, and at a quarter before nine, proceeded to the steam-boats Washington, 
Fulton, and Providence, stationed at the foot of Whitehall Street. At the same place was also 
stationed the Commerce, Capt. Seymour, with the elegantsafety-barge. Lady Clinton. This barge, 
with the Lady Van Rensselaer, had been set apart by the Corporation, for the reception of the 
invited ladies, with their attendants. The Lady Clinton was decorated with a degree of taste 


and elegance which was equally delightful and surprising. From stem to stern she was orna- 
mented with evergreens, hung in festoons, and intertwined with roses of various hues, China 
astres, and many other flowers alike beautiful. In one of the niches below the upper deck, was 
the bust of Clinton, the brow being encircled with a wreath of laurel and roses. Mrs. Clinton, 
as well as many other distinguished ladies were on board of the barge, which, though the party 
was select, was much crowded. Capt. Seymour, however, paid every attention to his beautiful 
charge ; every countenance beamed with satisfaction, and every eye sparkled with delight. 

A few minutes after nine o'clock, the whole being on board, the fleet from Albany, as before 
mentioned, led by the flag ship of the Admiral, came round from the North, and proceeded up 
the East River to the Navy Yard, where salutes were fired, and the sloop of war Cyane, was 
dressed in the colors of all nations. While here, the flag ship took on board the officers of that 
station, together with their fine band of music. The officers stationed at West Point, with the 
celebrated band from that place, having been received on board on the preceding evening, were 
likewise on board of the Chancellor Livingston. On returning from the Navy Yard, the steam- 
boat Ousatonic, of Derby, joined the fleet. The wharves and shores of Brooklyn, the Heights, 
and the roofs of many of the buildings, were crowded with people to an extent little anticipated, 
and only exceeded by the thick masses of population which lined the shores of New York, as 
far as Corlaer's Hook. The fleet having arrived between the East end of the Battery and 
Governor's Island, was joined by the ship Hamlet, before-mentioned. While the commander 
was signalling the various vessels, and they were manoeuvring about to take their stations, the 
spectacle was beautiful beyond measure. Long before this time, however, our City had been 
pouring forth its thousands and tens of thousands ; Castle Gwden, the Battery, and every avenue 
to the water, were thronged to a degree altogether beyond precedent. The ships and vessels in 
the hwbor were filled, even to their rising and tops. And the movements, in forming the order 
of the aquatic procession, gave opportunity to all, to observe the several vessels in every advan- 
tageous and imposing situation. Loud cheers resounded from every direction, which were often 
returned. Every thing being in readiness, and every boat crowded to the utmost, the fleet, 
taking a semi-circular sweep towards Jersey City, and back obliquely in the direction of the 
lower point of Governor's Island, proceeded down the bay in the order detailed in the official 
report of the Admiral ; — each boat and ship maintaining the distance of one hundred feet 


The ship Hamlet wns taken in tow by the Oliver Ellsworth and Bolivar, and assumed and 
maintained its place in splendid style. Four pilot-boats were also towed by other steam-boats, 
together with the following boats of the Whitehall Watermen, all tastefully decorated, viz. — 
The Lady of the Lidcc, Dispatch, Express, Brandy wine, Sylph, Active, and Whiteh^dl, Junior. 

The sea was tranquil and smooth as the summer lake ; and the mist, which came on be- 
tween seven and eight in the morning, having partially floated away, the sun shone bright and 
beautiful as ever. As the boats passed the Battery they were saluted by the Military, the 
Revenue Cutter, and the Castle on Governor's Island ; and on passing the Narrows, they were 
also saluted by forts Lafayette and Tompkins. They then proceeded to the United States' 
schooner Porpoise, Captain Zantzinger, moored within Sandy Hook, at the point where the 
grand ceremony was to be performed. A deputation, composed of Aldermen King and Taylor, 
was then sent on board the steam-boat Chancellor Livingston, to accompany his Excellency the 
Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, and the several Committees from Buffalo, Utica, Albany, 
and other places, on board the steam-boat Washington. 

The boats were thereupon formed in a circle around the schooner, preparatory to the cere- 
mony ; when Mr. Rhind, addressing the Governor, remarked "that he had a request to make, 
which he was confident it would afford his Excellency great pleasure to grant. He was desirous 
of preserving a portion of the water to be used on this memorable occasion, in order to send it 
to our distinguished friend, and late illustrious visiter. Major General Lafayette ; and for that 
purpose Messrs. Dummer and Co. had prepared some bottles of American fabrick for the occa- 
sion, and they were to be conveyed to the General in a box made by Mr. D. Phyfe, from a log 
of cedar, brought from Erie in the Seneca Chief" The Governor rephed, that a more pleasing 
task could not have been imposed upon him, and expressed his acknowledgments to Mr. Rhind, 
for having suggested the measure. 

His Excellency Governor Clinton then proceeded to perform the ceremony of commingling 
the waters of the Lakes with the Ocean, by pouring a keg of that of Lake Erie into the Atlantic ; 
upon which he delivered the following Address : — 

" This solemnity, at this place, on the first arrival of vessels from Lake Erie, is intended to 
indicate and commemorate the navigable communication, which has been accomplished between 
our Mediterranean Seas and the Atlantic Ocean, in about eight years, to the extent of more than 



four hundred and twenty-five miles, by the wisdom, public spirit, and energy of the peo- 
plii of the state of New York ; and may the God of the Heavens and the Earth smile 
most propitiously on this work, and render it subservient to the best interests of the human 

Doctor MiTcHiLL, whose extensive correspondence with almost every part of the world, 
enables him to fill his cabinet with every thing rare and curious, then completed the ceremony 
by pouring into the briny deep, bottles of water from the Ganges and Indus of Asia ; the Nile 
and the Gambia of Africa ; the Thames, the Seine, the Rhine, and the Danube, of Europe ; 
the Mississippi and Columbia of North, and the Oronoko, La Plata, and Amazon of South, 
America. The learned Doctor availed himself of this occasion to deliver the peculiar and inte- 
resting address which will be found in this collection, and which so happdy illustrates the uses 
of types and symbols. The Honorable Cadwallader D. CoLtiEN then presented to the Mayor 
the able Memoir upon the subject of Canals and Inland Navigation in general, which forms the 
first part of the present volume. 

Never before was 'here such a fleet collected, and so superbly decorated ; and it is very 
possible that a display so grand, so beautit'ul, and we may even add, sublime, will never be 
witnessed again. We know of nothins vvith which it can be compared. The naval fete given 
by the Prince Regent of England, upon the Thann's, during the visit of the Allied Sovereigns of 
Europe to London, after the delhrommi^nt of Napoleon, has been spoken of as exceeding every 
thing of the kind hitherto witnessed in Europe. But gentlemen who had an opportunity of 
witnessing both, have declared, that the spectacle in the waters of New York so far transcended 
that in the metropolis of England, as scarcely to admit of a comparison. The day, as we have 
before remarked, was uncommonly fine. No winds agitati'd the surfice of the mighty deep, 
and during the performance of the ceremonies, the boats witli their gay decorations, lay motion- 
less in beauty. The orb of day darted his gonial rays upon the bosom of the waters, where 
they played as tranquilly as upon the natural mirror of a secluded lake. Indeed the elements 
seemed to repose, as if to gaze upon each other, and participate in the beauty and grandeur of 
the sublime spectacle. Every object appeared to pause, as if to invite reflection, and prepare 
the mind for deep impressions — impressions, which, while we feel them stealing upon the soul, 
imp irt a conscioiisnpss of their durability. It was one of those few bright visions whose evanes- 
cent glory is allowed to light up the path of human life — which, as they are passing, we feel can 

never return, and which, in dlflu«ing a sensation of pleasing melancholy, consecrates, as it were, 
all surrounding objects, even to the atmosphere we inhale ! 

While the fleet was here at anchor, a deputation from the members of the assembly, from 
different parts of the state, who were on board one of the steam-boats, as guests of the Corpora- 
tion, preceeded by Clarkson Crolibs, Esq., their Speaker, paid a visit to the Seneca Chief, 
to reciprocate congratulations with the Buffalo Committee on the completion of the Grand Can;d, 
to which the Legislature, of whom they were members, had made the last and finishing appropri- 

Every thing boing made ready for returning to the City, salutes were fired from the Revenue 
Cutter, the pdot-boats, several of the steam-boats, and from the " Young Lion of the West," 
who, having prepared himself with a pair of brazen lungs at Rochester, often mingled his roar 
with that of the artillery with which he was saluted on his passiige down. Wliile passing up 
the Narrows, the passengers on board of the different boat= partook of elegant collations. The 
Corporation, with their guests, dmed on board of the Washington — the Mayor presiding, assisted 
by Aldermen King and Taylor. 

When approaching the British armed vessels before mentioned, the latter fired another 
salute. In consequence of this compliment, a signal was immediately made from the flag ship, 
and the whole squadron passed round them in a circle. The United States Schooner Porpoise, 
manned her yards, and gave the Britons three cheers, which were returned. While performing 
this circular manoeuvre, the British bands struck up " Yankee Doodle ;" in return for which act of 
courtesy, the American bands, as they passed the other side, successively played " God save 
the King." Another circumstance connected with these demonstrations of good feeling, must not 
be omitted. On board of the Swallow, au elegant breakfast was given in honor of the occasion, 
by her commander, Lieutenant Baldock, to a numerous company of ladies and gentlemen, on 
which occasion was tastefully displayed a series of elegant and appropriate drawings, in water 
colours, representing Britannia, Columbia, the Eagle, the Lion, and an English and American 
Sailor, Neptune, Liberty, and the flags and shields of both nations, all classically arranged, denoting 
good feeling, fellow-ship, and union of sentiment. There were also, round one of the devices for a 
tower, two designs of canal basins, with double locks — one as coming through Welch Mountains 
—the other as through American Mountains of granite ; and on their basements were conspicu- 
ously inscribed, " Clinton," and " Bridgewater," in honor of men whose pursuits in each 


country were so similar. The whole was designed by J. R. Smith, and executed by him and an 

One reflection occurred to us when the fleet was below the Narrows, which, although it has 
no immediate relation to the time or the occasion, it may not be amiss to mention. When we 
viewed the number and tonnage of the steam boats employed, and the countless multitude of 
passengers borne upon their spacious decks, we could not but reflect upon the facilities of 
defence which, by means of steam navigation, our city would possess in the event of hostilities 
with any maritime power, and an attempt upon our lives and property from this direction. 
There were out upon this occasion, besides other craft of magnitude, no less than twenty-nine 
steam-boats, each capable of carrying from twelve to twenty-four guns, and from one to five 
hundred men. And from the readiness with which this force was assembled, and from the rapid 
multiplication of vessels of this description with the increase of business in our metropolis, 
there, is no doubt, that even at the present moment, fifty boats, with ten thousand men and six 
or seven hundred guns, might be collecteil, prepared, and sf>nt to repel an approaching naval 
armament, in one, or, at most, two davs. Neither .vinds nor tides could stay their progress, or 
control their movements. Th.^y could choose t'leir own time, position, and points of attack; 
and tremendous must be the power that conid successfully oppose, and superhuman the skill 
that could baffle, an expedition ot this kuid, directed by the hand of valor, and sustained by the 
nnconquerable spirit of freemen ! 

The head of the land procession, under Major General Fleming, Marshal of the day, assisted 
by Colonels King and Jones, Major Low, and Mr. Van Winkle, had already arrived on the Bat- 
tery, where it was designed the whole should pass in review before the Corporation and their 
guests, and the spectators on board of the other boats, which lay to near the shore, to afford an 
opportunity of witnessing the cars, and banners, and other decorations of the several societies, 
professions, and callings, who had turned out in the city in honor of the event commemorated. 
The Washington and Chancellor Livingston, ran into the Pier No. 1, in the East River, and 
landed the Corporation and their friends, at the proper time for them to fall into the rear of 
the procession. The fleet then dispersed, each vessel repairing to its own moorings ; and thus, 
without a single accident to alloy the festivities of the day, ended an agreeable fete, unrivalled in 
beauty and magnificence, we fearlessly aver, in the annals of the world. 



This narrative would probably be considered incomplete, were it not to include a notice of 
that part of the pageant which was exclusively confined to the city. And yet a minute descrip- 
tion can hardly be deemed necessary, since the ample official report of the Marshal of the day 
is included among the papers collected in this volume. To be as brief as possible, therefore, 
we will state, in general terms, that the procession through the city, although it could not, from 
the very nature of things, present to the eye the bright and glowing images which ravished the 
senses upon the water, was yet such as to reflect the highest credit upon our city, the societies, 
and individuals, whose patriotism induced them to bear a part, and the occasion which called 
them forth. 

The civic procession was composed of the several benevolent and mechanic societies of our 
city ; the fire department ; the merchants and citizens ; the officers of the State Artillery and 
Infantry, in imiform ; the literary and scientific institutions ; the members of the bar ; the mem- 
bers of many occupations and callings not formally organized into societies, accompanied by fine 
bands of music, exclusively of the Corporation, their associate committees and distingished 
guests, who fell in the rear of the procession, as before mentioned, at the Battery. This pro- 
cession, the largest of the kind ever witnessed in America, commenced forming in Greenwich- 
street, six abreast, at nine o'clock, a. m. — the right resting in Marketfield-street, near the 
Battery — and extending to the distance of more than a mile and a half. The line of march 
was taken up at half past ten. Its first movement was a countermarch of the whole column 
upon the right wing. By this manoeuvre, every society and division was brought into such close 
approximation with each other, as to afford every individual a distinct view of the whole. The 
procession moved from Greenwich-street through Canal-street into Brojidway — up Broadway to 
Broome-street — up Broome-street to the Bowery — down the Bowery to Pearl-street — down 
Pearl-street to the Battery — over the Battery to Broadway — and thence to the City H ill. 
Along the whole extensive line of march, the spectacle was of a most imposing and animating 
description. Every society and occupation seemed to have been engaged in a laudable strife, 
regardless of the expense, to excel each other in the richness of their banners, and the beauty 
and taste exhibited in their badges and other decorations. Nor had the money of the societies 
been expended, or the skill of the artists of our city exercised, in vain. F'or never did a more 
imposing array of banners, of exquisite design and magnificent appearance, stream and flurt. r in 
the breeze. -Many of the societies, likewise, had furnished themselves with cars of gigantic 
structure, upon which their respective artizans were busily engaged in their several occupations. 
The ornaments of many of these cars were curiously wrought, and they were otherwise beauti- 


fully and splendidly decorated. The richest Turkey or Brusseb carpets covered the floors of 
some, whilst the costly gilding of others re6ectefi back the goldfn rays of the sun with dazzling 
effulgence.* The eye of beauty, too, gazed with delight upon the passing scene ; for every 
window was thronged, and the myriads of handkerchiefs which fluttered in the air, were only 
rivalled in whiteness by the delicate hands which suspended them ; while the glowing cheeks, 
the ingenuous smiles of loveliness and innocence, and the intelligence which beamed brightly 
from many a sparkling eye, proclaimed their possessors worthy of being the wives, mothers, and 
daughters, of freemen. It was in fine a proud spectacle ; but language fails in attempting its 
description — much more in imparting to paper the sensations which it created. It is not diffi- 
cult to describe individual objects correctly, but it is impossible to portray their general effect, 
when happily grouped together. It is amid scenes like these — a faint gleam of which can only 
be conveyed to the future antiquary or historian — that the mind is absorbed in its own reflec- 
tions — musing in solitude, tliough surrounded by the gay and the thoughtless — and literally 
lost m its own imaginings. 

The festivities of the day were closed in the evening by illuminations of the public buildings 
and the principal hotels, upon many of which appropriate transparencies were exhibited. The 
illumination of the City Hotel contributed largely to the brilliant appearance of Broadway. 
Great taste was also displayed in the illumination of the New York Coffee House. The front 
in Sloat Lane presented a brilliant wreath, encircling the letter " C."' The front, in William- 
atreet, displayed the words " Grand Canal," in large and glowing capitals. We do not remem- 
ber to have seen a more original and beautiful method of illuminating, than that adopted at this 
establishment. Peale's Museum presented a beautiful transparency — rays of glory, containing 
a motto, illustrative of the dependence of the fine art<! upon the success of commerce. Scuddrr's 
Museum likewise, was brilliantly illuminated, and a very large and beautiful transparency was 
exhibited in front. The Park Theatre was illuminated, and also exhibited appropriate transpa- 
rencies without, while within, an interlude, composed for the occasion by Mr. Noah, with 
scenery specially prepared for the occasion, was received with great applause. A similar pro- 
duction from the pen of Air Woodworth, was played at the Chatham Theatre, and was likewise 

* For a particular description of the several cars, banners, and badges, the reader is referred to the repprt 
of the marshal of the da; above alluded to. 


well received. The house of Mr. Seixas, in Broadway, was illuminated, and an ajiproprlate 
transparency, representing Fortune embarking on board of a C;inal-boat, loaded with bags of 
money, and several appropriate emblematical devices, were exhibited. At " the Lunch," a 
toansparency was exhibited representing the Canal-boat " Seneca Chief," receiving on board his 
Excellency the Governor, the Buff.Jo Deputation, Indian Chiefs, Sic, preparatory to her pas- 
sage from Lake Krie into the Canal. But the City Hall was the grand point of attraction, and 
too much praise cannot be given to our Corporation for the great exertions which they made 
to contribute to the enjoyment and festivities of the day. The City Hall, under their direction, 
w'iis superbly illuminated, the front presenting a very magnificent transparency, on which were 
painted interesting views of the Canal, columns with the names of worthies, fig-ures emblematical 
of the occasion, &.c. The fire-works prepan-d by Mr. Wilcox, far exceeded the public expecta- 
tation, and were unrivalled of the kind. Such rockets were never before seen in New York. 
They were uncommonly large. Now they shot forth alternately showers of fiery serpents and 
dragons, " gorgons, and hydras, and chimeras dire ;" and now they burst forth and rained down 
showers of stars, floating in the atmosphere like balls of liquid silver. The volcanic eruption of 
fire-balls and rockets with which this exhibition was concluded, afforded a spectacle of vast 
beauty and sublimity. They were sent op apparently from the rear of the Hall to a great 
height, diverging like rays from a common centre, then floating for a moment like meteors of the 
brightest light, and falUng over in a graceful curve, presenting a scene magnificent and en- 
chanting. The Park was filled to overflowing ; not less than eight or ten thousand admiring 
spectarors were collected in it to view the splendid display which the Corporation had pre- 
pared so munificently for their fellow-citizens. 

Thus passed a day so glorious to the state and city, and so deeply interesting to the count- 
less thou.'iands who were permitted to behold and mingle in its exhibitions. We have before 
said that all attempts at description must be utterly in vain. OthM-s can comprehend the great- 
ness of the occasion; the Grand Canal is completed, and the waters of Lake Erie have been 
borne upon its surface, and mingled with the Ocean. But it is only those who were present, and 
beheld the brilliant scenes of the day, that can form any adequate idea of their grandeur, and of 
the joyous feelings which pervaded all ranks of the community. Never before has been pre- 
sented to the sight a fleet so beautiful as that which then graced our waters. The numerous 
array of steam-boats and barges, proudly breasting the billows and dashing on their way regard- 
less of opposing wmds and tides ; the flags of all nations, and banners of every hue, streaming 
splendidly in the breeze ; the dense columns of black smoke ever and anon sent up from the 

boats, now partially obscuring the view, and now spreading widely over the sky and softening 
down the glare of light and color ; the roar of cannon from the various forts, accompanied by 
heavy volumes of white smoke, contrasting finely with the smoke from the steam-boats ; the 
crowds of happy beings who thronged the decks, and the voice of whose joy was mingled with 
the sound of music, and not unfrequently drowned bj- the hissing of the steam ; all these, and a 
thousand other circumstances, awakened an interest so intense, that " the eye could not be satis- 
fied with seeing, nor the ear with hearing." We rejoiced ; and all who were there rejoiced ; 
although, as we looked upon the countless throng, we could not but remember the exclamation 
of Xerxes, and feel that " an hundred years hence, not one of all that vast multitude will bo 
alive." The splendor of beauty, and the triumph of art, serve to excite, to dazzle, and often 
to improve the condition and promote the welfare of mankind : but the " fashion of this world 
passeth away :" beauty and art, with all their triumphs and splendors, endure but for a season ; 
and earth itself, with all its lakes and oceans, is only as the small dust of the balance, in the sight 
of Him who dwells beyond the everhisting hills. 

On Saturday, the fifth of November, Mr. Rhind and Commodore Wiswall gave a splendid 
entertainment to the Committees from the West, and the Captains and Officers of the several 
steam-boats who had borne a part in the celebration from Albany to this City, and on the preced- 
ing day. This entertainment was served on board of the " Chancellor Livingston." It was 
designed as a plain republican feast, but was nevertheless rich and bountiful, comprising the 
choicest viands and delicacies of our mirkets. A number of patriotic sentiments were "iven, 
and the company was further cheered and enhvencd by appropriate songs. It was indeed a "feast 
of reason and flow of soul." 

On Monday evening, the seventh of November, the festivities of our city were appropriately 
concluded by a ball, which was given in the Lafayette Amphitheatre, in Laurens-street, by the 
officers of the militia, associated with a committee of citizens. The circus-buildings, compris- 
ing a spacious stage used for dramatic representations, was enlarged by the addition of an edifice 
in the rear, wliich had been used for a riding school. These were connected in such a manner 
as to form an area cf much greater extent than that of any other ball-room in the United States, 
being nearly two hundred feet in length, and varying from sixty to near one hundred feet in 
width. The usual entrance to the circus from Laurens-street, was closed up, and new entrances 
opened from Thomson-street, in the rear, through the riding school. The front was brilliantly 
illuminated, presenting in large letters, formed by bright lamps, extending over the doors acros'i 


the building, the words, " The Grand Canal." The whole area within was newly floored 
for the occasion, and divided into three compartments by the original diviaion of the audience 
part of the circus, the stage, and the additional building on Thomson-street. Of these we shall 
spealc in order, but briefly. The two tier of boxes were preserved, and decorated for the 
accommodation of that part of the company which chose to retire and be spectators of the busy 
assemblage below. Access was obtained to them through a flight of steps in the middle of the 
boxes, of which the centre one had been removed. The dome in this part of the hall was 
ornamented with green wreaths, which were appropriately festooned with beautiful and various 
flowers, sweeping gracefully to the pillars which supported the boses, terminating at and around 
them. Above the proscenium were the names of the engineers who have been employed in 
the construction of the Canal, viz. — Briggs, White, Geddes, Wright, Thomas ; opposite these, 
and in the centre of the circle of boxes, was a bust of Washington, surrounded with evergreens, 
and around were inscribed the names of the past and present canal commissioners. Hart, Bouck, 
Holly, De Witt, North, Livingston, Fulton, Clinton, Van Rensselaer, Morris, Eddy, Young, 
Seymour, Porter, EUicott. 

From the roof, splendid chandeliers added their blnze of light to the numberless lampi 
which were hung nearly parallel to the upper boxes. Passing into the upper apartment the 
eye was met by a scene of equal splendor One side of this room, which is the stage of the 
Theatre, was formed by a beautiful piece of scenery, representing the interior of an elegant 
chamber, with pmper doors, handsomely ornamented. The othf-r side was occupied by the 
band of music, who were placed behind a species of turret, on the face of which arches were 
skilfully painted, and in the distance of which, landscapes were represented. Here was also 
hung the painting, spoken of near the commencement of this narrative, from the cabin of the 
canal boat, faithfully representing the whole arrangement at that place. The music of the 
band nhich was placed here, was excellent, and we discovered that the bugle notes were those 
of Willis, of West. Point. Our national stripes were suspended from the centre, and tastefully 
looped up from the extremities of the ceiling, forming a complete circumference of regular 
semicircles, meeting in a common centre. Here, also, were lamps and chandeliers, and wreaths 
of flowers, and garlands of roses, and various devices and emblems, highly creditable to the 
managers. But it was to the third and remaining apartment that the exertions of the committee 
were directed, and their success was correspondent. So many and so elegant were the 
decorations, that the writer cannot hope to give them more than a very brief notice, in whirb he 
must call upon the imagination of the reader to increase with treble iateusity the imperlect 


idea given of the splendor of decoration displayed. Imagine in a large hall, collected, and dis- 
played, in one grand view, the flags and emblems, and costly decorations, which, in a continued 
and scattered procession, called forth such enthusiasm of admiration. Imagine them presented 
in one overwhelming view, blazing with light, and bright with reflected beauty ; and when a 
proper idea is formed of the complete enchantment of the scene, add to this, in one prodigious 
mirror, the whole reflected back in trebled brilhancy, doubling the immense area, including the 
thousand lights that sparkled around, to tenfold greater splendor. And when all this is done, 
the imagination of the whole scene will be faint to the reality. Floods of light were poured 
forth from every point, which was glanced back by the glittering array of the military, and 
a thousand other objects of brilliant reflection. 

But entrancing above all other enchantments of the scene, was the living enchantmt'nt of 
beauty — the trance which wraps the senses in the presence of loveliness, when woman walks 
the halls of fancy — magnificence herself— the brightest object in the midst of brightness and 
beauty. A thousand faces were there, bright in intelligence, and radiant with beauty, looking 
joy and congratulation to each other, and spreading around the spells which the loves and the 
graces bind on the heart of the sterner sex. 

It only remains to speak of the ladies' supper-room, which was separated from the large 
ap-jrtment, by fl.tgs elegantly festooned, and raised at the given signal. Mirrors, and splendid 
lights, and emblems, and statues, and devices, beyond the writer's abilities to describe, orna- 
mented this part of the house in common with the rest. Upon the supper table was placed, 
floating in its proper element, (the waters of Erie,) a miniature canal-boat, made entirely of 
maple sugar, and presented to Governor Clinton by Colonel Hinman, of Utica. The refresh- 
ments were excellent, and considering the vast number who were to partake of them, very 
plentifully provided. At a seasonable hour the compiny retired, with memories stored for 
future conversation, with the events, and decoration:^, and splendors of " The Grand Canal 

During the visit of the western committees, they received every attention from the Corpora- 
tion. They were accompanied by committees on visits to our principal institutions, and a dinner 
was given them at Bellevue They remained several days enjoying the hospitalities of the city ; 
and when they departed with their boats for the West, they were furnished with a keg of water 
taken from the " briny deep," for the purpose of being mingled wiLii the waters ol Lake Erie. 


The keg was handsomely ornamented with the arms of the city, over which were the words, in 
letters of gold, " Keptune's return to Pan," and under the same, the words, " JVew Yo7-k, ith 
JVor. 1825." Upon the other side of the keg were the words, " JVtiter of the Atlantic." 

The Seneca Chief arrived at Buffcdo, on Wednesday, November the twenty-third, after a 
quick and prosperous passage. The committee was received with a hearty welcome, and it 
was resolved to complete the grand ceremonies by mingling the waters on Friday the twenty- 
fifth. Accordingly, on that day, a large and respectable number of ladies and gentlemen, with 
the village band of music, repaired on board the boat, at the upper dock, and were towed 
from thence through the basin into the Lake, by several yawl boats, which were politely fur- 
nished by the masters of the different vessels then lying at the wharves. At ten o'clock, a. m., 
the ceremony of mingling the waters, under a salute from Captain Crary's artillery, was per- 
formed by Judge Wilkeson, who delivered an appropriate address on the occasion ; after which 
the boat was towed back to the dock, and the company dispersed with all those feelings of gra- 
tification which the interesting ceremony was calculated to produce. In the evening, the gen- 
tlemen of the village assembled at the Eagle Tavern, and unanimously passed sundry resolu- 
tions expressive of their sincere acknowledgments for the polite and hospitable treatment their 
committee had received from the corporation and citizens of New York and Albany, and the 
respective villages along the whole line of the Canal. 

Thus was the proud festival and the attendant ceremonies concluded. And thus has closed 
one of the greatest, happiest, proudest, most propitious scenes, our state has ever witnessed. 
Excepting that day. on which she joined the national confederacy, there is none like it. What 
visions of glory rush upon the mind, as it attempts to hft the curtain of futurity and survey the 
rising destiny of New York through the long vista of years to come ! For, whatever party 
rules, whatever political chief rises or falls, agricuUure, manufactures and commerce, must still 
remain the greatest of our concerns ; and by the opening of the Canal, these three great vital 
interests are all most eminently promoted. What a wide spread region of cultivated soil has 
already been brought within the near vicinity of the greatest market on our continent I How 
many manufacturing establishments have had the value of every thing connected with them 
doubled by this "meeting of the waters!" How vastly have the internal resources of this 
metropolis been in one day practically extended ! Without adverting to the cheering prospects of 
future times, how much has been already effected at this present hour, in the enhancement of the 
total value of the whole state ! If we justly consider the Hudson, flovving through the densest 


popnhtion wl best cultivited territory, an invaluable blessing, and inrleed, a leading feature of 
our local ady tntnges, what must be the opening of a new and additional river, twice the navig- 
able length of the Hudson, and traversing a region, whose population and ;igricultural wealth 
will soon rival, and even surpass, those of its banks ? A river which, in one year more, will 
carry our trade to the foot of the Falls of St. Mary, and will eventually give us access to the 
most remote shore of Liike Superior ! 

The authors and builders — the heads who planned, and the hands who executed this stupen- 
dous work, deserve a perenni^d monument ; and they will have it. To borrow an expression 
from the highest of all sources, " the works which they have done, these will bear witness of 
them." Europe begins already to admire — America can never forget to acknowledge, that they 





Extract from the Buffalo Journal, J^ov. 29, 1 826. 

This boat arrived in our harbor, from the Atlantic, on Wednesday the twenty-third instant, 
after a pleasant and quick passage, laden with a rich cargo of merchandize from New York, 
having on board a goodly number of passengers, a healthy crew, and an elegant keg filled with 
water taken from the *' briny deep," which was presented by the Corporation of New York to 
the citizens of this village, for the purpose of being mingled with the waters of Lake Erie. 
This keg was handsomely ornamented with the arms of the city, over which were the won Is, 
in letters of gold '■^Neptune's Return to Pan,'' and under the same, the words -.Vea' York, 4th 
JS'ov. 1825." Upon the other side of the keg were the words " fVater of the Atlantic." 

After welcoming the return of the boat, with the Buffalo Committee, it was resolved that the 
ceremony of mingling the waters should take place on Friday, the twenty-fifth instant. On 
that day a large and respectable number of ladies and gentlemen, with the village band of music, 
repaired on board the boat, at the upper dock, and were towed from thence through the basin 
into the Lake, by several yawl boats, which were politely furmshed by the masters of the dif- 


ferent vessels then lying at the wharves. At ten o'clock, a. m. the ceremony of mingling the 
waters, under a salute from Captiiin Crary's artilltry, was perlbriued by Judge VVilkeson, who 
delivered the following addi'ess : — 

•' Fellow-Citizens, 

" The joyful event of the completion of the Erie Canal wis a few days 
since announced to us, since which we have heard or witnessed the consnitul.itions of a gratttul 
people, and the honors whiclj seem, by a simultaneous impulse, to have been awarded to the 
founders of this great work. 

" The delegation sent by you. in the first boit from the Like, to receive and reciprocate the 
civilities upon the borders of the Canal and the Hudson, h ive p-rformed the duties assigned 
to them, and from the Western Seas to the Atlantic, have had the gratification of beholding all 
the evidences of public gratitude, which could be elicited b^ one continual round of joy and 

" It would be ungrateful in the Committee, not to notice the hospitality which distinguished 
their reception at the great commercial emporium of our couuiry. There, in pursuance of 
arrangements marked with peculiar splendor and magnificence, the waters of the Lake "re 
mingled with those of the Ocean ; and we, m return, now unite those of the Ocean ivith the 

" This, fellow-citizens, closes the ceremonies which have grown out of an event hereafter 
to be held in grateful remembrance, and commemorated by annual demonstrations of gratitude, 
as one of the most important which has distinguished the history of mankind, and one from which 
not only the present, but generations yet unborn, even to the latest posterity, are to derive innu- 
merable blessings." 

After which the boat was towed back to the dock, .and the company dispersed, with all those 
feelings of gratification which the interesting ceremony was calculated to produce. In the 
evening, the gentlemen of the village assembled at the Eagle Tavern, and unanimously expressed 
the following seniiments :— 

" Resolved, — That the citizens of this village do with unfeigned pleasure tender to the 
Corporation and citizens of New York, their sincere acknowledgments for their very polite and 
hospitable treatment to the Committee from this place, in the late celebration. 

" Resolvf.d, — That the Corpor-ition, Committees, and citizens of Albany, are entitled to the 
like thinks and acknowledgments, for their highly esteemed emd patriotic conduct on the same 

" Resolved, — That it is due to the diFerent Con niittees and citizens of their respective 
villages on the whole line of the Canal, who were engaged in the late proud celebration, to 
acknowledge the exceeding kindness and hospitality to the Committee and guests on boiird the 
"Seneca Chief," while performing her first voyage from Liike Erie to the Atlantic." 




Monday, Aor. 21, 1825. 

Resolved uifANiMouSLY, — Th;it the thanks of the Board be presented to the Grand 
Marshal Mijor General Fleming, fur the very able maimer in which he conducted the Civic 
Procession through the City. 

And as a further mark of respect, It is ordered, that a Silver Medal, a Box, and a Copy of 
the Memoir of Mr Colden on the New York Canals, be presented to him, and to each of his 
Aids, in the name of the Corporation. 

Resoi-ved unammgusly, — That the thanks of the Board be presented to Charles Rhind, Esq. 
for the very able manner in which he conducted the aquatic demonstrations of joy. 

And as a further mark of respect. It is ordered that a Silver Medal, a Box, and a copy of 
Mr. Colden's Memoir be presented to him, in the name of the Coiporation. 

Resolved unanimously, — That the thanks of the Board be presented to the several Socie- 
ties, theii Othcers, and Committees, lor the aid iUTorded by them in the late celebration. 

And as a further mark of respect, It is ordered, that the several Societies be presented 
with a Medal, a Box, and a copy of Mr. Col len's Miviioir, and that thr-ir respective Officers and 
Committees be each presented with a medid in the name of the Corporation. 


RESotvED UNANIMOUSLY, — That the thanks of tlie Board he presented to the Steam-boat 
Companies, — the Captains of the several steam-boats, — the Members of the Marine and Nauti- 
cal Societies who assisted in the Aquatic Celebration, — the Pilots, Bargemen, and Whitehall 
Watermen, and all other Associatians who aided the Corporation upon the waters. 

And as a further mark of respect, It is ordered, that a Medal be presented to them, re- 
spectively, in the name of the Corporation; and a Medal, a Box, and a copy of Mr. Colden's 
Memoir to the several Companies or Associations. 

Resolved unanimously, — That the thanks of the Board be presented to the Merchants, 
the Military, and the citizens, — the Fire Department, the Literary and Scientitic Institutions, 
and to all other Associations who assisted in the Civic Celeration in the City. 

And as a further mark of respect, It is ordered, that a Medal be presented to each Member 
of the several Committees as a tribute of respect to the Bodies they represented ; and that the 
Fire Department, the Literary and Scientific Institutions, and all other Associations who aided the 
Corporation in the Celebration in the City, be presented, in the name of the Common Council, 
with a Medal, a Box, and a copy of Mr. Colden's Memoir. 

Resolved unan-imously,— That Medals, Boxes, and Copies of Mr. Colden's Memoir, hi. 
reserved to be hereafter distributed under the special direction of the Common Council. 




To all the invited guests of the Corporation — Ladies and Gentlemen, each a Medal. 

To all the Committees and Olficers of the different Societies who united in the Celebration, 
each a Medal. 

To the President of each of the said Societies, for the use of the Society, a Medal, a Box, 
made of maple brought in the first Canal-boat the Seneca Chief, and a copy of Mr. Colden's 
Memoir on the New York Canals. 

To the Committees from the West, the North, and from every part of the State, each a 
Medal, a Box, and a copy of the Memoir. 

To the several Colleges of the State, — to the City Library, — to the Historical Society, — to 
the Philosophical and Philological Societies, — to the Public School, — to the Apprentices' Libniry, 
and all the other incorporated Societies for the promotion of literature, in the City of New- 
York, each a Medal, a Box, and a copy of the Memoir. 


To the OflScers of the Army and Navy of the United States, on this Station, each 

To the respective Commandants of the Army and Navy of the United States, on this Station, 
a Medal, a Box, and a copy of Mr Colden's Memoir, as a testimony of the high respect which 
the Corporation entertain for the Army and Navy of our country. 

To the Eflitors of the puWic papers in this City, and to the Artists who have assisted the 
Common Council to commemorate the event, each a Medal, a Bos, and a copy of the Memoir. 

To all other persons who may have aided the Municipal Authorities in the Celebration, an 
appropriate tribute of respect, by a special vote of the Board. 


To the Vice-President of the United States,— to the Heads of the Departments of the United 
States, — to the Governor and Lieutenant-Governor of the State of New York, — and to the 
Governors of each of the States of the Union, a silver Medil, a Box made of maple, brought 
in the first Canal-boat the Seneca Chief, and a copy of Mr. Colden's Memoir. 

To the Foreign Ministers of the United States, a silver Medal, a Box, and a copy of the 

To the former Governors and Lieutenant-Governors of this State, a silver Medal, a Box, 
and a copy of the Memoir. 

To the Officers of the Revolutionary Army who belonged to the New York line, and who 
served before the capture of General Burgoyne, and until after the surrender of Lord Corn- 
wallis, a silver Medal, a Box, and a copy of the Memoir. 

To the Members of the Common Council of eighteen hundred and twenty-five and eighteen 
hundred and twenty-six, each a silver Medal, a Box, and a copy of the Memoir. 

To other distinguished persons by a special vote of the Board. 




To the family of George Washington as a tribute of profound respect for the memory of 
hira who " first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his fellow-citizens," covered the 
American name with imperishable glory, a Medal of gold of the highest Class, a Box made of 
maple, brought from Lake Erie in the first Can.d-boat the Seneca Chief, and a copy of the 
Memoir of JMr. Colden ; the same to be presented on behalf of the Corporation of the City of 
New York, and in the name of the City. 

The same to the three surviving Signers of the Declaration of Independence, as a tribute 
of profound respe^i for those memorable pitriots who, in its support, pledged " their lives, their 
fortunes, and their sacred honor." — John Adams, of Qiiincy, Massachusetts ; Charles Carroll, 
of Carrollton, Maryland ; Thomas Jefferson, of Monticello, Virginia. 

The s ime 'o th'^ list surviving Major General of the Army of the Revolution, as a tribute of 
profounil respect, (or tho<>- oiilicers an'J soldiers whose valour and patriotism, secured to us the 
blessings we now enjoy — Major General La Fayette. 

The same to the Senior Officer, now living, of the Navy of the Revolution, as a tribute of 
profound respect for that infant power which promises to be the future bulwark of the Republic. 

The same to the President and Ex-Presidents of the United States, as a tribute of profound 
respect to those citizens, who by eminent public services have attained the highest office in the 
gift of the Republic. 

John Quincv Adams, President. 
Ex-Presidents of the United States now living. 
John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, 

James Madison, James Monroe. 

The same to the family of Robert Fulton, as a tribute of profound respect for the memory 
of him, who by applying the power of steam to the purposes of navigation, justly ranks amongst 
the greatest benef ictors of his native country, and of the world. 

The same to the author of the Memoir, Cadwallader D. Colden. 

o r 





At the request of the Honorable RirHARD Riker, Chairman of the Committee of Arrangements, 
for the Grand Canal Celebration at New York, November the fourtli, eighteen hundred and 
twenty-fiFe, the Subscriber, in behalf of the Department of the Fine Arts, 

Respectfully Reports, 

That, having been charged, (by the Committee of Arrangements appointed by the 
Corporation of New York, on occasion of the Grand Canal Celebration,) with superintenling 
the execution of such works of art as this most interesting event required, he offers the 
following statement of what has been effected by the respective Artists, kc. employed, 
and the works they have accomplished, chiefly with a view to explain or illustrate the 
account of the Grand Canal Celebration, its history, commencement, and final termination, 

consummated at New York, the fourth of November, one thousand eight hundred and twenty- 
five ; 

All of which is respectfully submitted, 


J^o. 79, Liberty Street, New York. 


The first of my operations was to make an appropriate Device, intended for a Medal, to be 
worn by the guests of the Corporation on the joyful day ; but time not permitting the execution 
of such a work as would be worthy of the occasion, it was resolved to have this Device en- 
graved by a first-rate artist, and postpone the Medal to be executed at leisure : it was therefore 
engraved on copper by Mr. Asher B Durand, and printed on satin by Mr. Elias Wade, jun., and 
thus, as a Badge, was worn by the ladies and gentlemen on the Celebration Day. 

This Device will be found printed on the same plate with the Invitation Ticket. It repre- 
sents the visit of Pan to Neptune ; Pan seated in a canoe, loaded with the products of our fields, 
forests, and Mediterranean Seas, from Lake Erie, being piloted by an aboriginal native of the 
western forests, with brotherly affection embraces Neptune, who, seated in his naval car, 
and attended by a Triton winding his conch, reciprocates the embrace ; and in this attitude, 
with arms interlocked, Neptune returns the visit to Sandy Hook, by accompanying his brother 
Pan to his native woods on the shores of Lake Erie. 

The inscription on the Device is — " Alliance of Neptune and Pan," above the figures, and 
" Union of £ne with the Atlantic," beneath. 

C '> * 

.//;/ r/' ^^/^. .v/// 

r/,r/r. .///./^//.v.../ 

•IJKAX-D) I'AX AL^«//////^//.^^//'i^//)//^/; r/w//,/rM .'/'/.!'VMo^>,r///^.') 




Our npxt operation was the Invitation Card to the Guests, who were invited to 
accompiiny the Mayor, Recorder, and Common Council, to witness the ceremonies, and 
the immixtion of the mild waters of Lake Erie with the brinj floods of the Atlantic, at Sandy 

The Device for this Card was designed and engraved by Mr. Asher B. Durand, upon a steel 
die ; the application or impression from this die, on the copperplate, was made by the very in- 
genious Mr. Cyrus Durand, and the lettering was executed by Mr. Joseph Perkins ; thus 
exhibiting the admirable eifect produced by this union of first-rate talents. 

This Device represents the Arms of the State, that single handed accomplished this 
mighty work, in a section of time so short as to annihilate all comparison. The Supporters are 
Liberty and Justice. The Shield exhibits a rising Sun. The Crest is a full fleged young Eagle, 
on a terrestial sphere, and expanding his pennons for flight. In the back ground, on the left 
hand of Liberty, is the City of New York, as it is approached from the Narrows, at the Southern 
extremity of the State ; and on the right hand of Justice are seen some of the wonderful series 
of Locks, at Lockport, near the Western termination of the Canal. 

The inscription on the Card is 

" The Corporation of the City of New Vork, invite to participate with them in 

the celebrations on the Completion of the Erie Canal, to meet at the City Hall, on Friday, the 
fourth day of November, at eight o'clock, and proceed with them, in the steam- boat, to Sandy 

■' Grand Canal commenced 4 July, 1817, completed 26 October, 1825."* 

Durand and Wright. 
Thus in seven years, four months, and twenty-three days was achieved this great work. 

* This plate will be found printed on the same page as the badge, and beneath it. 



The next pictorial document in chronological series, is the Ticket for the Grand Canal 
Celebration B Ji, giren by the military ,ind citizens of New York, which fete closed the Cele- 
bration in this City. In the centre of the Ticket is an elliptical frame, in which is a view of a 
Canal, with Locks, and boats towed by horses ; in the distance is seen a Lake or the Ocean, with 
a Lighthouse upon a point of hind. 

This Picture is supported by civil and military trophies, and beneath is an Urn pouring forth 
a stream of water into a Lake below ; above the elliptical fnune a flood of nidiated light shoots 
upwards from a luminary behind this picture and frame ; in the midst of the rays are the words 
" Canal Celebration Ball, Nov. 7, ISSS." At the bottom of the Ticket are the words — " Givea 
by the Militia Ollicers and Citizens of New York."* 


The Corporation of the City having voted that a Medal should be struck, in commemora- 
tion of the great event of opening the navigable communication between Lake Erie ;md the 
Ocean, the arrival in our harbor of a loaded flotilla, charged with the productions of the im- 
mense regions, surrounding the wide Western Lakes, and the measureless water-courses of our 

■^ We are sorry it is not in our power to say who is the composer or engraver of this plate ; we shall only 
remark, that whoever he or they were, they needed not to have been ashamed of their work ; the engraver at 
least has robbed himself of one-half of his recompence by this omission. 

Since writing the above, upon a more strict inquiry we have been enabled to ascertain the composer, en- 
graver, and printer, to be Mr. Samuel Maverick, Engraver and Copperplate Printer, 73, Liberty Street. These 
above mentioned circumstances show why aa artist ought at least to put his name upon his worli, as he otherwise 
must do himself great injustice. 



^^ v/ 


.. .vi ili/K^r! 0?-^''^'' ■'''Oi^- ■ 

Aff trs' uiA. 347 

Northern Continent, the same general idea of a Device, was adopted, as on that of the Badge 
worn by the Corporation guests on the celebration daj'. 

On the face of the Medal is represented Neptune, who, with brotherly cordiality, returns 
Pan's visit to the Ocean ; the motto — " Union of Erie with the Atlantic." Under this 
emblem are the initi;ds of the artists R. Del., W. Sc. On the reverse is the Armorial Bearings 
of the State, the sole agent in the great work ; on the right of which are appropriately repre- 
sented Aqueducts and Locks ; and on the left is a view of the Harbor and City of New 
York; the motto " Erie Canal Comm. 4 July, 1817, Comp. 26 Octr. 1826:" the contracted 
words in this motto in full are " Commenced," and " Completed." Underneath the above is 
the sculptor's name " C, C. Wright" ; and below are the words in small Roman capitals " Pre- 
sented BY THE City of N. York." 


The Medal was engraved by Mr. Charles C. Wright, (of the firm of A. B. and C. Durand, 
Wright and Co., corner of Broadway and Canid Street.) The lettering by Mr. Richard Trested, 
Engraver and Die Sinksr, 68, William Street, upon dies made by Mr William Williams, Worker 
in Iron and Steel, corner of Liberty and Green Streets. The Medals, themselves, were most 
elegantly impressed by Mr. M;dtby Pelletreau. (of the firm of Pelletreau, Bennett, and Cooke, 
170, Broadway,) at their Gold and Silver Manufactory, No 12, Rose Street, by means of his 
very powerful and exquisitely adjusted screw Press. The superlative beauty of this Medal (to 
every one who has seen it) renders it perfectly unnecessary for us to say more, than that all 
pronounce it to be a chef d'ouvre of the fine arts ; each artist, in his respective department, 
having manifested himself to be an accomplished master of his art ; which, by this combination 
of talents has aided in producing a work of such superior excellence as to rival the best masters 
of the old world. We must, however, in justice to the sculptor decide, that although each has 
crowned himself with a never fading wreath of fame, that a ray of superior lustre reflects upon 
the brow of the artist who engraved the dies. 




When it had been determined by the City Authorities that a Medal should be struck, the 
Committee of the Corporation, (Aldermen King and Davis,) were charged, amongst their other 
commissions to Buffalo, with procuring a suificient quantity of the most curious woods, such as 
birdseye, and curled maple, red cedar, &c. the produce of the western forests, for making 
Boxes to inclose the Medal. This was procured, and deposited in a canoe, now in the City 
Hall, made by the aboriginal red men, on the shores of Lake Superior ; and embarked on board 
the " Seneca Chief,'" the first Canal boat from the Lakes, which navigated the length of waters 
from Erie to the Ocean. We may here take notice, that the logs of cedar were procured by Mr. 
Miles, son of Capt. Thaddeus Joy, of Buffalo, from an island in Lake Erie. The Boxes are made 
of these woods, which inclose the Medals presented to the invited guests. The Boxes for the 
semi-metal and silver Medals are likewise made of these verj' curious woods. On the inside of 
the lid is the crest of the City Arms ; with the inscription " Presented by the City of New 
York ;" and on the innerside of the bottom " This Bos was made of a piece of Wood, brought 
from Erie in the first Canal-boat, the Seneca Chief." The gold Medals are inclosed in elegant 
square red morocco cases. 


The makers of the curious wood boxes were Mr. Daniel Karr, turner, 222, William Street ; 
and Mr. Duncan Phyfe, Murray Street. The maker of the morocco cases for the gold Medals 
was Mr. Robert Tanner, Morrocco Case Maker, 67, Liberty Street. 


As a considerable number of the printed plates of this work are in Lithography, that is 
literally, Drara;ing on Stone ; it will not perhaps be unacceptable, at the present moment, to give 
some very concise remarks on the history, and manner of operation, of this new art ; particu- 
larly as these impressions are from the very first press, which on this side of the Atlantic, has 
been put into effectual operation, many abortive attempts having been made prior to Mr. Imbert's 
successful one. We shall be but brief in our notice on the subject as he is preparing a publica- 
tion on the essential parts and uses of the Art of Lithograph}', which he is about to lay before 
the pubUc with all convenient despatch. 

In this age of discoveries not the least admirable is the Art of Lithography : it was the 
result of a regular and skilful series of well-planned experiments by Jlr. Alois Scnefelder, of 
Munich, the capital of Bavaria. The era of discovery c;mnot be confined to a day or a yeai- ; 
he began his experiments upon Bavaiian stone, from economical principles, with a view to save 
the expence of copper or tin plates ; with a mind gifted by nature and from competent educa- 
tion, furnished with a good acquintance with the mechanic powers, but chiefly with chemistry, 
he prosecuted his experiments to the eventual results we now witness. The improvements on 
this art, since the first publication of his course of experiments, have been very rapid ; in the 
earUer part it was chiefly apphed to the more common purposes of life, by the principle of 
Transfer, to writings, lettering, music, kc. ; but for the liigher purposes of pictorial subjects, its 
progress has comparatively been more slow, until within a few years, say six or eight, since 
which in Germany, France, Italy, England, k.c., it has already rivalled the best of lineal chalk 
and wood engravings, and upon the principle of Transfer, it is equal at least to the finest engrav- 
ing that ever was or can be executed on copper, kc. 


Artists, at present, chiefly practise it in the chalk, the pen and ink, or with the hrush man- 
ners — or in the art of transferring drawings, writings, &c. done on tninsfer paper, to the stone, 
by which a hmitless number of fac-simihes may be printed. 

At the first view of this art, and its pecuhar mode of impress, most persons have imagined it 
to be the easiest and most simple thing in the world to be a Lithographer ; but experience h:is 
taught the many, many thousands, who have attempted it, that nothing less than the utmost care 
and experience can accomplish the operation ; the manipulating of the drawings is easy enough, 
and look perfect on the stone, but the chemical principles, on which all the success of printing 
depend, cannot produce a good impression if the draughtsman, however good an artist, does not 
execute the work with the necessary precaution. The artist must not only be a good designer, 
but a good chemist, and a good painter. The art does not depend so much on mechanical as 
chemical principles. 

The leading point in this new art is through the medium of Soap, to make the repulsion of 
oil to water produce the curious effect of prmting drawings upon stone of a certain texture. 

The instruments for this kind of drawing are — first, inks similar to China or Indian ink, to 
be drawn on the stone with the steel pen or brush ; secondly — Lithogmphic chalk, similar to, 
and worked like, common black French chalk, on the stone ; thirdly— transfer ink, whereby 
any drawing or writing made on transfer paper, is transferred positively to the stone, and may be 
multiplied " ad infinitum," which in all probability will turn out to be the most useful part of the 
art, whereby confidential and circular letters of any description may be multipled with the ut- 
most despatch ; as was universally practised by both parties during the Revolutionary War in 
Europe, and is still exercised by every one of these Governments, as well as by men of busi- 
ness, thereby saving the expence of copying clerks, or transcribers ; and, moreover, in the 
cheapest, most expeditious, and confidential manner. 

Every gentleman ought to be provided with a sufficient quantity of this transfer paper and its 
ink, which he can use with equal facility as common ink, by only rubbing it down with rain 
water ; if this writing is sent to a Lithographic press, a hundred or more fac similies, identical 
with the original manuscript may be had in a few hours at a very small expence. 


Such being the history and nature of the art of Lithography, every candid eye, which views 
these very interesting first essays of the art executed in America, but will allow, that neither 
Germany, France or England, could show equal specimens executed during the first six months 
after its introduction into these countries. 

From the nature of our work it was required that many artists should be at once employed, 
in order to facilitate the publication ; where any inJividu:il has done more than one piece, there 
is evident improvement in his second essay, as in the case of Messrs. Imbert, Duponchel, 
Canova, Morgan, Tuthill, kc. : but this improvement is most remarkable in the printing depart- 
ment, which is an indispensible branch of the art, without which the most perfect of drawing 
would be of no avail. 

We shall now proceed to notice the subjects of art, as much as possibly we can in (he order 
they occurred. 


It having been thus determined, by the Committee of Arrangements for the Grand Canal 
Celebration, to employ the art of Lithography in furnishing plates for this publication ; Mr. 
Imbert was charged as a test of his talent, to execute (from a draught furnished by Mr. Rbind, 
the Admiral of the day) a plan of the position of the Fleet, as formed when passing around, 
and reciprocating international salutes, between this grand gala Fleet of steam-gallies (return- 
ing from Neptune's domain) and the British Sloops of War Swallow, Captain Baldock, and 
Kingfisher, Captain Henderson, at anchor in the North River, off the Battery. 

The result of this experiment was satisfactory as to the competency of Mr. Imbert to draw 
upon stone, and to print Lithographically, so much so, that a much more difiicult task was 
assigned to him, with a view to draw out the potency of his capabihties. 


The subject of this Plan of the Fleet was one of the most interesting occurrences of the 
day, and would afford a most excellent opportunity for the exercise of the talents of any accom. 
plished marine artist, as viewed from a point about one hundred yards south from the King- 
fisher, during the circumnavigating movement of the Fleet around the British vessels, at which 
period the finest of friendly feelings were manifested between the British tars, and their Trans- 
atlantic cousins, in this great day of mutuiU gratulations. 

K. British Sloop of War Kingfisher. 
S. British Sloop of War Swallow. 

1. Steam-galley Nautilus. 

2. United States Revenue Cutter Alert. 

3. James Kent, Steam-galley. 

4. United States Schooner Porpoise. 

5. Long Branch, Steam-galley. 

6. Oliver Ellsworth, Steam-galley. 

7. Ship Hamlet, with the Marine and Nautical Societies. 

8. Bolivar, Steam-galley. 

9. S. G. Washington, with the Corporation. 

10. S. G. Commerce, with the Barge 

11. Lady Clinton, with the Ladies. 

12. S. G. Chancellor Livingston (Flag-ship.) 

13. S. G. Fulton. 

14. Canal-boat Seneca Chief, of Buffalo, the first vessel from Lake Eiie. 
16. S. G. Constitution. 

16. Canal-boat Young Lion of the West, from Rochester. 

17. Chief Justice Marshall, Steam-galley. 
18 Canal-boat Niagara, from Black Rock. 

19. Constellation, Steam-galley. 

20. Swiftsure, S. G. 

21. Barge Lady Van Rensselaer- 

22. Richmond, S. G. 

23. Olive Branch, S. G. 

24. Barge Matilda. 

25. Saratoga, S. G. 



^^KAli €®]LlgB_a^ 









vs " % 

\ '^ 







26. Providence, S. G. 

27. Fannv, S. G. 

28. United States, S. G. 

29. HonsATONic, S. G. 

30. Governor Woolcott, S. G. 

31. Pilot-boat Ulysses. 

32. LtNNEus, S. G. 

33. Pilot-boat Gratitude. 

34. George Washingtok, S. G. 

35. Pilot-boat William Bavard. 

36. John Marshall, S. G. 

37. Pilot-boat Grand Canal. 

The reason why the Whitehall Watermen's Barges are not represented on the Diagram and 
Catalogue of the Fleet was, that a few minutes prior to this period, when passing Governor's 
Island they left the line, for the purpose of landing, and with their Car, bearing the victorious 
Boat, already prepared to join the Procession on shore, at that moment fihng into the Battery, 


For the annexed diagram of the Fleet, we have been obligingly favored by C. Rhind, Esq. the 
Commandant of the aquatic fete. This Plan was the first test of Mr. Imbert's talents as a Li- 
thographer, and Lithographic Printer. 


The second subject recommended to Mr. Imbert's skill, was a Frontispiece or Title Page, 
in which not only his talents as a draftsman should be tested, with Lithographic chalks in pictorial 
style, but also in that of a Literator, or former of letters in Lithographic ink. The lettering of 
this subject needs only to be seen to be admired, and although not quite equal to copperplate, yet 
it holds its ground very respectably in the presence of the generality of copperplate lettering ; 
especially when it has the good fortune to be successfully printed ; for it must be remembered 
that in this art, in its present condition, it seems in a considerable degree to depend on a kind of 
good luck, to succeed in taking off impressions. 


The subject of the Vignette is the Anns of the City. The shield bears in the centre the 
four sails of a windmill, in the form of an X. or St. Andrew's Cross ; in the upper and lower 
compartment is a beaver ; and on the two lateral sides, is a flour barrel. In the infancy of our 
State, these were very characteristic emblems, as windmills, in the City of Nieuw Amsterdam, 
were the most prominent instruments of manufacture, and the country at that period abounded 
chiefly with beavers ; exhibiting flour and peltry as the staple commodities of the Province. 

The Crest is the same as that of the State, namely a young eagle perched on a hemisphere, 
expanding his wings, and ready to spring off to flight. The supporters are, on the dexter side. 
an armed Indian native of the forest ; and on the sinister, a mariner ; both together uniting to con- 
vey the idea of the amphibious character of our State — and moreover, are the modern represen- 
tatives of the Heathen God Pan, and his brother Neptune, the God of the Seas, as exhibited on 
our Celebration Badge and Medal. On the right hand of the Indian is a larch pine, and in the 
distance a Canal, with locks ; on the left hand of the mariner is the steam-galley Chancelloi 
Livingston, under steam, commemorative of steam-gallies having been first built in New York ; 
and in the distance is a view of Castle Williams and Fort Columbus on Governor's Island, with 
a still more distant prospect of New York ; the whole illuminated by a radiating rising Sun, 
giving relief to the thick volumes of rolling smoke, issuing from the flue pipes of the Chan- 
cellor Livingston. 

The composer of the Vignette, was the same artist who designed the Badge, and View of 
the Aquatic Procession of the Steam Gallies. — The composer and lithographer of the lettering 
was Mr. Anthony Imbert, 79, Murray Street. 


With reference to the Memoir, it was necessary to have at least two Maps ; one of the State 
r>f New York, exhibiting the course of the Canal, and its relation to the neighbouring country, 


but especially the navigable waters of it ; the other to shew its connexion, not only with the 
water courses of the United States, but those of the whole Northern Continent. 

For this purpose, the artist who designed the View of the Fleet, was charged with preparing 
Drafts of Maps, to suit the size of the Book, and calculated to be executed in Lithography by 
Mr. Imbert ; all of which have been executed, and the result is seen in those respectable speci- 
mens of Lithographic mapping ; they are, in many respects, superior to the general style of 
copperplate maps, for utility and effect, and rivalling it in neatness. 

Prior to, or about the period of the origin of this operation, one of the Members of the 
Committee, then about travelling to the South, was charged with an endeavour to procure 
Lucas' splendid colored maps, pubhshed at Baltimore : this was accomplished after some neces- 
sary improvements and alterations were made, by instructions from the Committee. 

In addition to these two, there is another map, exhibiting what was the st;)te of knowledge of 
the geography of our State, about a hundred years since, chiefly with a view to the then known 
portages, between the various navigable waters, and great L;ikes ; it is a fac-siniilie of the Frontis- 
piece to Governor Colden's " History of the Five Indian Nations." It is full of intelligence, 
and pregnant with information on the then known state of our country. If the Committee had 
done nothing more than to have republished this Map they would have deserved well of their 
country ; as the Book is now very scarce, its re-prmting would amply remunerate any enterpris- 
ing publisher. 


This Lithographic Map was executed by Mr. Imbert, in one of his happiest moods. The 
artists who engraved Lucas' colored maps, printed at Baltimore, were B. T. Welch and Co., but 
drafted by F. Lucas, Jun. 




The whole of the voyage of the Canal-boat Seaeca Chief, from it* commencement at Buffalo, 
until its completion at Sandy Hook, and its return again to L:ike Erie, is not only pregnant with 
matter for deep reflection, but the scenes exhibited during the whole of the celebrations, raises 
the imagination to a high degree of even sublime feeling. Many of these were truly picturesque, 
and worthy of the master talents of the graphic art ; some of the niost interesting and best cal- 
culated for the pencil were — 

1st. — The reception at Albany of the Western Flotilla from the Lakes, &c. 

2nd. — The midnight scene at West Point, which was subhme. 

3rd. — The arrival of the Fleet at the dawn of day, when the Washington S. G. went to 
tender congratulations to the Flag Ship, majestically holding her way down the river ; both 
dimly seen through the morning fog. 

4th. — The Fleet preparing to form the line, on its return from the Navy Yard, at Brooklyn. 

5th. — At the moment of consummating the union of the waters of Lake Erie with the 
Atlantic, the Fleet formed in a circle, the Man of War Porpoise in the centre. 

6th. — The Fleet on its return from Sandy Hook, passing around the British Sloops of War 
at anchor, prior to its dispersion, — kc. &,c. &c. 

The fourth of these subjects is that of the plate ; it is a Panoramic View of the North 
River and City Sqadrons, uniting into one Fleet, and preparing to form the line of Procession to 
Sandy Hook. The eye of the spectator is supposed to be on Pier No. 1 , East River, and is 
looking towards West by North. The scene occupies about two thirds of the horizon, from 
Fort Columbus on Governor's Island, to the Revenue Boat House, on Whitehall SUp. 


In the centre of the picture is the James Kent, steam-galley, bearing down from the North 
to the East River, to take her position in the Line. Towards the right side of the picture, and 
on her starboard beam, are the four Pilot-boats, preparing to weigh anchor ; next to them is the 
Revenue Schooner Alert, Captain Henry Cahoone, which having weighed anchor, is saluting 
the passing Fleet, whilst she is just taken in tow by the S. G. Nautilus. Next to her is the 
S. G. Washington, carrying the great standard of the City, with the Corporation on board. In 
her wake is the Fulton steam galley, with the Corporation Guests ; succeeded by the Ladv 
Clinton barge with the ladies invited by the Corporation, with her consort the S. G. Commerce 
abreast. On the larboard quarter is seen Castle Williams ; — Governor's Island in the distance ; 
and at the extremity of the right of the picture, is a steam-galley, following in the wake of 
the Lady Clinton ; over the bow of the steam-g-alley is Fort Columbus saluting ; and in the 
fer distance Staten Island is seen. 

Between the Lady Clinton and the Alert, the Whitehall Barges appear taking their position 
in the Line. Again — Towards the left side of the picture, off the stern of the James Kent, is 
the ship Hamlet between two steam-gallies, the Oliver Ellsworth and Bolivar. Next, 
under the Hamlet's stern, is the S. G. Constellation, and in the wake of the Hamlet is the 
Flag Ship Chancellor Livingston, S. G., with the Seneca Chief in tow ; under the stern of 
the Seneca Chief is the S. G. Constitution, having the Canal-boat Young Lion of the West 
in tow ; and lastly the S. G. Chief Justice Marshall, towing the Niagara, Canal-boat ; the 
Jersey Shore in the distance. 

Moving the eye towards the left of the picture is seen Castle Garden ; then the artillery on 
the Battery saluting the assembling Fleet ; the old tower of the flag staff (since demolished) and 
the Revenue boat-house, standing on wooden piles, is on the estrerae left, between which and 
the Battery, on the foreground. Pier No. 1. protrudes itself into the East Rjver, on which are 
mounted the Watermen's Battery of cannon, on marine carriages — a waterman in the attitude 
and act of firing. 

To those who had the good fortune to witness this scene, a look at this sketch will no doubt 
resuscitate the soul animating enjoyments of the day, with all its attendant circumstances, in 
which a nation's victory, unaccompanied with tears or blood, was displayed in a genuine generous 
triumph, over " rocks and woods, and mountain floods," for one of the most beneficial purposes 


To those who had not this feUcity, it will perhaps convey but a very faint idea of the occa- 
sion ; truly it is beyond the competency of pen or pencil to describe it, for what can communi- 
cate to the mind of a stranger, the exalted feelings of a noble, generous, free people, exulting 
over, (not their fellow man,) but over those most mighty obstacles appointed by the Author of 
nature to exercise the mental and corporeal faculties of his intelligent creation. 

Who can describe the moving masses of citizens, every where assembled on this real holi- 
day on shore ; or the swift velocity of the gathering gallies on the water, crowded with a joy- 
ous people ; the thick ascending volumes of curling smoke arising from those powerful engines^, 
which impel the self-moving galley wherever the pilot lists ; the closing squadron or the length- 
ening line ; the gay attire of streamers and ensigns ; the clear bland atmosphere, and cloudless 
skies ; the thunders of the triumph on either shore, reciprocated from the gallant fleet : — The 
art of man on this occasion is bafHed and silent; — imagination, and that but faintly can conceive 
it, or people the waters, the hills, the trees, the' windows, the house tops, and every spot of 
ground with cheerful countenances and exulting shouts. 

If these reasons are not sufficient, for not attempting more than is performed on this plate, 
we have none to offer, for omitting the vast multitudes of animated populaiion ; beside a thou- 
sand other circumstances beyond the power of the pencil. 


The artist who composed this subject, is the same who designed the device, for the Badge, 
Vignette, &c. It was by accident, or rather an irresistible impulse, that this piece was originally 
put on paper ; the glory of the scene created so delightful a sensation in his mind that he seized 
his pencil, long laid aside, to put down in black and white, in the language artists are wont to 
express their ideas, the images that occupied his minds eye, with a view to preserve the recol- 
lections of those impressive objects, presented to his visual faculties as well as to his soul, on 
that memorable day of felicitations. He was the more tempted to this by his not being altoge- 
ther unacquainted with the construction of shipping. But nevertheless in the minutiae he was 
greatly aided by the politenesss of C. Rhind, Esq. the Admiral of the day. Moreover, to shew 
the full extent of our good fortune, Mr. Imbert, the Lithographer, is professionally a Marine 
\rtist ; originally he was a French Naval Officer, but long a prisoner in England, where he devoted. 


this time of leisure, to the improvement of his talents, in the study of drawing and painting, 
under a first rate emigrant artist, as a useful as well as agreeable amusement during the tedium of 

In the execution of the plate Mr. Imbert availed himself of the assistance of Mr. Felix 
Duponchel, and that of the composer, (with a view to hasten this large work) on the less essen- 
tial parts of the subject, when he was not otherwise necessarily engaged in superintending the 
press, or preparing the different pieces of the artists engaged in this Book ; but the essential parts, 
particularly the shipping, are his own individual work. 




(0/1 Copperplate.) 


To embellish the Memoir an excellent Portniit was obtained ; painted by Messrs. Waldo 
and Jeweti, No. J, Pine Street ; engraved by Mr. Asher B. Durand (of the firm of A. B. and 
C. Durand, VVright and Co. Corner of Canal Street and Broadway) ; and printed by Mr. Elias 
Wade, jun. ol' the same firm. 

Any observations on this Portrait are superfluous ; the confessedly high and well-earned repu- 
tation of the artists, require none of our commend. itions, for every one can, at a glance, decide 
on the excellency of this work of art. — " Esto perpetuo." 


Mayor of the City of New York, for the year eighteen hundred and twenty-five. 
{On Copperplate.') 

This Portrait was engraved from the life by Asher B Durand. This picture speaks for 
itself in a language superior to what we can utter : Mr. Durand is here in his true element. 



Mayor of the City of New York for the year eighteen hundred and twenty-six. 
(On Copperplate.) 


Engraved by Asher B. Dnrand, from a portrait painted by Rembrandt Peale, Esq. In tliis 
subject both artists hare immorlulized themselves. 


Late Representative and Senator in Congress, and President of the State and County Medical 
Societies of New York, Professor of Botany and Materia Medica in the University, Surgeon 
General of the Militia, President of the Lyceum for Natund History, iic. kc. 

(Oit Copperplate.) 


Painted by Jarvis, and engraved by Asher B. Durand. To say that it is engraved by Mr. 
Duraiid is suihcieut. 


(Ore Copperplate.) 


Engraved by J. B Longacre, from a miniature by G. Catlin. This portrait was transmitted 
to the Committee from Albany. This picture is represented as inclosed in a very handsomely 
carved frame. 


Recorder of the City of New York for the year eighteen hundred and twenty-six. 
(/n Lithography.) 
Artist's Plate. 


This subject was drawn from the original Bust in the possession of Blr. Browere, the Sculp- 
tor ; and Uthographed by Signore Dominico Canova, at the office of the Lithographic press. 

This original Bust is an exquisite specimen of the new art of making genuine fac-similies 
from the living subject ; it was recently invented by John Henri Browere, a native of this 
City. No painting or modelling can equal it in giving the true form and expression of the coun- 
tenance ; wilful ignorance or something worse, can alone object to this valuable disroverv ; the 
multitudes of those of the highest rank who have undergone the operation, are sufficient wit- 


nesses to its not Tjeing executed with any painful or even disagreeable circumstances to the 

In this age of important discoveries and improvements in the Arts and Sciences, this is none 
of the least, and if Mr. Brovvere is an enthusiast, in the arts, where will you find an original 
genius that is not ; " to snatch a grace beyond the rules of art" is only the privilege of the 
e nthusiast .* 



Exiending from the Atlantic to Lake Erie, running near the 43rd degree of North latitude, 
and 9 degrees of longitude. T;dien in eighteen hundred and twenty-two and twenty-three, 
under the direction of the Honorable Stephen Van Rensselaer, by Amos Eaton, and engraved 
by Rawdon, Clark and Co. Albany. 

* Unhappy S-ulptnre ! in our otlierwise happy cnimtry she droops anJ hanjs her harp upon the willow? ; 
every species of art and science is nobly protected, but the poor outlaw Sculpture. 

Mr. John Frazee, our elegant Sculptor, on application to what he thought the competent authorities for 
panting copyright, wa5 informed Sculpture had no protection from our laws, and of course is subject to piracy, 
tlie moment of publication by every mechanic ; his particular object was the protection of his celebrated bust 
of Ueneral La Fayette. He made a feeble effort for the passage of a law for the protection of Sculpture ; his 
application was handed over to a Committee, and there it will no doubt remain unless some of our Represen- 
tatives shall take pity on poor helpless Sculpture, and raise up her willow crowned head, by having that pro- 
tection granted which one single friendly word could accomplish on the floor of Congress. 

Mr. Browere finds himself in the same situation as Mr. Frazee, and can never publish any of these superb 
busts of our greatest and best men which he has made, but at the peril of being pirated; and thus losing the 
recompence due to ingenuity and talents ; he feels this circumstance haog like a heavy weight about his neck, 
wluht thus the wings of his genius are dipt to the shortest pinch. 


This Sectional Profile of the country extends from Boston Harbor to Albany, antl from 
Albany to Buffalo and Lake Erie. On this Plate are four views on the Grand Canal, viz. — 

First. — Entrance into the Canal at Albany. Drawn by J. Bights. 

Second. — View of the Aqueduct Bridge at Little Falls. Drawn by J. Bights. 

Third. — View of the Aqueduct Bridge at Rochester. Drawn by J. Bights. 

Fourth. — View of the Village of Black Rock, from the Canada Shore, in eighteen hundred 
and twenty-three. Drawn by T. H. Wentworth. 



{Lithographic Plate.) 

This sketch is taken from the Genesee level, representing the village of Lockport as it first 
bursts upon the eye when approaching it from the East. After passing over a monotonous level 
of sixty-two miles without a lock, the eye of the traveller is suddenly arrested by a formidable 
terrace of rocks, about eighty feet in height, forming the Eastern extremity of the " Mountain 
Ridge." The Canal enters this terrace, a distance of seventy or eighty rods, through a natural 
ravine, formmg a convenient harbor for an hundred boats, or more. 

The terrace presents itself here in the form of two capes or promontories, with an abrupt 
elevation of eighty feet ; the one on the right hand remains in a perfect state of nature ; the 
one on the left has been cut away for some distance lor the purpose of forming an embunkuiunt 
on the opposite side of the Canal. 

Approaching Lockport from the East nothing of the village can be seen until the boat is 
just doubling this cape, when in an instant the whole scene opens to view, and the sound of the 
bugle announces its approach. 

The singularly romantic appearance of this place, with its striking contrast and sudden tran- 
sition from the tedious monotony of the country below, must fill the mind of every traveller 


with peculiar delight as he approaches it from the East. The abrupt eminence seen in the left 
of the sketch is denominated by the village " Prospect Hill." It appears at first sight to over- 
look the village, but is only of equal height, being the summit level of the Mountiiin Ridge. 

Drawn from nature and lithographed by Geo. Catlin, Esq. 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

This sketch, taken from the top of the terrace, presents a more general view of the village 
and harbor. 

From the singular and appropriate form of this basin it would seem as if nature had 
Ibrmed it for the purpose to which it is now applied. At its head it is of a circular form, and 
surrounded by a rampart of rocks ; its form is somewhat similar to a funnel, its banks describing 
about two-thirds of a circle. The declivity of the hill to the basin is such as to admit of a 
tolerably easy ascent and descent for the transaction of business, and affords the finest advan- 
tages for the location of manufactories, for the operation of which there will be an abundant 
supply of water discharged through a waste gate at the head of the locks, with a fall of sixty 

In this view are distinctly seen the fine double locks by which the Canal lifts itself sixty feet 
to the summit levfl of Lake Erie. To prevent the detention of boats the locks are made double, 
one tier being exclusively for the purpose of boats ascending, the other for descending. At the 
summit of these locks the Canal commences its course to the Westward, cut through solid rock 
for three miles, varying from twenty to thirty feet. 


The villRge, as will be seen in this sketch, is situated on both sides of the Canal, immediately 
above the locis ; its foundation is on solid rock, but in most parts covered with a light soil It 
contains about fifteen hundred or two thousand inhabitants, and a few of its buildings are remark- 
ably tine, being built of stone ; the rem;iinder ore built of logs, and intended only for temporary 

Drawn from nature and lithographed by Geo. Cutlin, Esq. 


{Jjilhogra pliic Plate.) 

This sketch is a representation of the Canal on the upper level, exhibiting the interior per- 
spective of the excavation one mile West of Lockport, shewing the stratification of the rocks, 
and the manner of towing boats through the excavation. 

A ride through this chasm for three miles, on a Canal-boat, between those formidable walls 
of solid rock, where nothing is to be seen above their summits, though in the midst of a forest, 
is calculated to excite in the susceptible mind the most pleasing and singular sensations. These 
Walls are from twenty to thirty feet high, and all the way perpendicular, though their surface is 
extremely uneven by the fracture in blasting. 

Except for a few feet in thickness at the top, the whole wall is formed of geodiferous limestone 
rock, containing in its cavities the most beautiful clusters of crystahzation, on which the passing 
stranger is continually catching his eye and reluctantly passing. 

The tow-path in the deepest cutting is about one-third of the distance down the wall, and 
suiSciently wide for two horses to pass ; the outer extremity of it is secured by a sill of hewn 


timber, which is a security for the horse, and gives freedom to the tow-line which slides 

Drawn from nature and lithographed bj^ Geo. Catlin, Esq. 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

This sketch gives a representation of the highly interesting manner in which this great work 
was performed, shewing ail the means of excavating in full operation. The excavation being 
entirely in solid rock, for three miles, it was consequently effected by boring and blasting only j 
for this purpose from ten to fifteen hundred men were employed for several years ; most of 
them were employed within the excavation, and the requisite number without, for the purpose 
of disengaging the stone from the Canal. The principle means of raising the stone were the 
crimes represented in the sketch. 

These cranes are an ingenious application of mechanics to a horse power, enabling him to 
raise a ton weight or more from the bottom of the Canal, and discharge it in huge piles at a 
distance of sixty or seventy feet from the excavation, and fifty feet above its banks. They were 
genenJIy set at regular distances from each other, (sixty or seventy f'ot.) and fifteen or twenty 
feet from the Canal, allowing the extremity of their gibs to describe about to the middle of the 

These cranes were some of them made double, which not only seemed to accelerate their 
operations, but to add materially to their strength. They were worked by a horse, whose 
power upon the axle, by means of a lever, was very great. The gib was so constructed as to 
act with great ease around the ai hour, and where the weight was raised to its proper height 


one man, by a line dpjcending from the extremity of the gib, would easily describe the machine 
so as to bring the weight directly over the heap where it was discharged, and easily return it by 
the same means. 

Each of these cranes formed a heap of rocks, as seen in the sketch, and when in full opera- 
tion for three miles in length, and the work progressing under the hands of fifteen hundred men, 
under a continual cloud of smoke, and almost incessant explosion of rocks, produced a novel and 
interesting scene. 

Since the completion of the Canal these cranes have all been destroyed, and nothing remains 
along the banks of the Canal except those huge piles of rocks, as seen in the sketch, extending 
for three miles. As nothing of these are to be seen from the Canal-boat, while passing through 
the excavation, I would recommend to the curious and romantic traveller to spend a day along 
these banks, where he can easily amuse himself among the beautiful minerals with which these 
heaps abound. 

Drawn from nature and lithographed by Geo. CatUn, Esq. 


{Lithographic Plate ) 

As at Albany the Canal commences, so at Buffalo it terminates ; along the bottom of the ter- 
race on which the town is seated, it is seen, until it communicates with the harbor in the creek. 

This was drawn from nature and lithographed by Geo. Catlin, Esq. 



{Lithographic Plate ) 

From the terrace the view extends over the Canal, terminating in the basin, the creek and 
harbor, the shipping and hghthouse, with the long breakwater projecting into Lake Erie ; on 
the horizon, in the centre, is the expanse of that Lalie ; on the right of the picture is the Ame- 
rican, and on the left of it the Canada shores. 

This was drawn from nature and lithographed by Geo. CatHn, Esq. 


(Lithographic Plate.) 

This view was talien from a Canal-boat, and represents the scene where the two artificial 
rivers of our State unite ; it is herewith given for the purpose of conveying to those unacquamted 
with its locality, an idea of its scenery. 


This subject was drawn on the spot by a gentleman competent to the task ; drawn on Litho- 
graphic stone by Mr. Felix Duponchel, and printed at the press of Mr. Imbert. 



[Lithographic Plate.) 

This subject is taken from a Canal -boat, in passing across the great dam which has been 
made across the Mohawk River, for the purpose of enabling the boats on the Northern Canal to 
p iss the river on a lovtfl. The beautiful scenery surrounding the Cahooes has long been the 
subject of adiiiiration to the traveller of taste ; the romantic wildness of the banks of the 
Mohawk can hardlji be surpassed. This View is tak; n at the moment the Falls fir.«l appear, 
and is decidedly the most picturesque point fron which they can lie seen; as the Canul-boat 
progresses in the Basin, the elongation of the covered bridge beiuw is fully rehevod by the 
white foam of the more distant Fiills. 

The Basin, from whence this View is t.iken is not the least admirable effort of art over 
aature which the traveller beholds in the construction of our Canals. 

This View was taken on the spot by the same gentleman who fivored us with that of the 
" Junction of the Western and Northern Canals,"' drawn on Lithographic stone by i\Jr. FeLx 
Duponchel, and printed by Mr. Imbert, 79, Murray Street. 



This page contains three coppprplates of Badges worn on the day of Celebration by the 

Saddlers, House Fainters, and f aucj Chair-makers. 



On a shield Gules, a chevron Or ; above it two and below one saddle Proper. Crest — a 
horse saddled and bridled, with a plumed crest of three ostrich feathers ; supporters, two 
bridled and plume-crested horses ; motto, on a wreathed ribbon, " Our Trust is in God." On 
the plate are the words — " Canal Celebration, New i'ork, IH^S " 

No artist is given. 



On a shield quartered, and on the dsxter upper and sinister lower quarterings Argent, is a 
chevron Gules ; above it two and below one Phoenix' head and neck proper. On the sinister 


i- x\y»'KHs ''o< Tj. 


upper and dexter lower quartering? Gules, three shields Argent, (wo above and one beneath; 
crest, a Phcenix ; supporters, two chained leopaids ; motto, " Amot et Obetlientia ;" at the top, 
" House Painters' Society." 

Artists unknown. 


{Copperplate ) 

Within a laurel wreath, in the centre of a glory, is a fancy chair, with the State crest as an 
ernament for the middle back rail ; at the top is a wreathed ribbon, with the motto, " Rest for 
the weary." 

Artists unknown. 


{Lithographic Plate) 

Thi'S phte contains two circular wreathes, abrenst of each other ; on the dexter side is a fijiure 
of Plenty, the cornucopias at her feet, and resting her left hand upon a fancy chair ; in her rear, 
is on in corn tield, at the foot of a high mountain ; in the distance is a village, with a ch-iir 
Di .mir^.ciorv ; In ih;' fiir distance is a ship in New VorkBHy with Castle Williams, on Governor's 
1>-I nd, on her starboard Itow ; and in the farthest distance is Isew Yoik. Beneath, on a labelled 
riijbuu, IS the motto, " By industry we thrive." 


On the sinister wreath is the Chairmakers Arms ; the shield is divided into three compRrt- 
ments — one across the upper part, separated horizontally — and two beneath, sub-divided ver- 
tically ; on the superior division is a fiincy settee ; on the lower dexter compartment Gules, is a 
square-bottomed fancy chair; and on the sinister, Azure, is another round seated one. The 
crest is a Chairmakers boring bitt, crossed vertically by a shaving tool. On a label beneath is 
the motto, " Rest for the Weary." 

These wreathes were borne on either side of the Bonner of this Society, on the day of 


Lithographed and printed by Mr. Imbert. 




Tliis device is emblematic of Science, Skill, and Benevolence ; Science is characterised as 
an angel, with appropriate instruments, and bending from a cloud she dehvers to Neptune a sex- 
tant, as the emblem of Naval Skill : Benevolence like a nursing mother, with her attendant cir- 
cumstances, is seated on a cornucopiae, upon the same cloud with Science. This scene is repre- 
sented as taking place outside of Simdy Hook ; on the right of Neptune, who is seated on his 
naral Ccir, and drawn by dolphins, are the High Lands of Neversink, and on the left of the pic- 
ture, is Staten Island ; in the distiint horizon is Sandy Hook Lighthouse ; pilot-boats, ships out- 
ward and inward bound are placed under their appropriate positions. 

In the centre of the upper compartment of the frame, which surrounds the device, is the 
crest of the State Arras : the eagle holds between his mandibles, a flying labelled ribbon, with 
the words " Science, Skill, and Benevolence" upon it ; on either side are nautical instruments, 
viz. — mariners compasses, sextants, log reels, minute and hour glasses, telescopes, charts, flags, 
ensigns, &.c. 

The leading object of this Institution is the promotion of nautical science ; and wo learn with 
great pleasure, that the Society is now zealously occupied in making preparation for the erection 
of an Astronomical Observatory ; and it is to be hoped that in addition to the liberality of our 
merchants and underwriters, legislative bounty will be added ; so that so useful and necessary 
an establishment may be speedily put into effectual operation. 



We are sorry it is not in our power to give the names of the composer and engraver of this 
elegant plate ; we can only say that it is handsomely executed on copper in the line manner. 



This elegant plate is divided into four departments, separated by convoluted carved frame- 

First. — On the dexter side of the upper part are the three principle marine sciences, 
Astronomy, Geography, and Mathematics, teudermg their services to a navigator. 

Second. — On the superior and sinister side is exhibited a shipwreck, — a drowned seaman 
on the shore, his bereaved wife and children mourning over it, whilst benevolent Love or Cha- 
rity, in the name of the Marine Society, attended by cheering Hope, came as good angels to com- 
fort and reheve the distressed family. 

Third. — On the lower dexter partition the device is a female Indian, armed with a bow and 
arrows, seated on a rock ; at her feet a beaver and a human head pierced with an arrow ; with 
mountains, woods, and waterfalls in the distance. 

Fourth. — In the inferior sinister department is a view of the City of New York, from 
Governor's Island, as it was in the year seventeen hundred and seventy. 

This plate was comi osed by J. L. Winn, and engraved by Mr. Morrison, Moorfields, London. 



The device on the superior part of this plate, is Charity affectionately attending to the 
necessities of Infancy and Youth. 

On the lower compartment, is a view at the Sea Bass Banks, looking towards Sandy Hook ; 
on the right side of the scene is the Jersey shore, and on the let"! is Staten Island ; in the centre 
is a pilot-boat, with all sail set, and scudding before the wind, to board an inward bound ship ; 
between these is a dismasted vessel, under jury masts, beating close hauled to windward, and 
towed by a pilot-boat towards the Hook. 

This excellent plnte designed and engraved by Hoogland, and originally printed by 
Valentine, but on this occasion most handsomely by Mr. EUas Wade, jun. 


In the A«iUATic Procession. 


This device represents Neptune on his triumphal car, drawn by four marine sea horsp.«, ou 
the tup of the floods ; a Triton on each flank, winding his ra:)rine Irump'^t ; Neptune standing up 
in his car, hoi Is in his right hand a banner, with the inscription " VViiiTiiHALt ;" aud in his 
left another banner, with itie words " American Star." 


Engraved upon the rocks on the shore are the names of the victors in the memorable boat- 
race, viz. — Cockswain, John Magnus ; Oarsmen, Cornelius Cammejer, Alfred Cammeyer, Chas. 
Beateaugh, Richard Robins. 


We know not who composed the original, but it was engraved by Mr. S. Maverick and J. F. 
Morin, from a sketch by Couiiuings. 


For the Land Procession. 


The Whitehall Watermen after their return from the expedition to Sandy Hook, landed, and 
having their car prep;u-ed, joined the Land Procession. This plate is indicative of that proces- 
sion, and of their having assisted in that as well as the Aquatic Fete. It is a representation of 
the victorious boat borne upon the car on that day of celebration ; in the distance is seen Castle 
Williams as viewed from the Whitehall Slip ; and still more distant is Staten Island. 

On a rock on the foreground is inscribed the word "Howard," in compliment to Major 
Howard of the United States Revenue Department ; and beneath are the words " Whitehall, 
Tictorious, May 20th, 1825." 

This plate was engraved by S. Maverick and J. F. Morin, from a draft by Cummings. 

. K..>Srf /,fg.^. 

J,i tJtIFiti l>a^JLiE JRS ^Mi^yiLib' 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

On the shield is a figure of Justice blinded, with a sword in her right, and a pair of scales in 
the left hand. The Crest is a Ropemaker working at the twisting wheel, an eagle perching on 
it, with expanded wings, seeming to prepare for an attack. The Supporters are two Rope- 
makers, — the one on the dexter side, standing on a pile of rope, carri'^s the striped flag of the 
United States, whilst the other on the sinister, also standing on a coil carries the standard of the 
same, bearing the striped shield, surmounted by the American Eagle ; all which ;u-e relieved by 
a ground of clouded sky and forest scenery. 

Underneath, on a flying l.ib -'lied ribbon, is tb? motto. " Althouiib w° go backward still we 
adv 'nee ;" below is a ropewalk, on a sloni- bri.lg- ol riv ^ arahos across a Can il, with a Canal- 
boat passing through the niiddle one ; on the other side ol' the bridge is a wharf, with a ship at 
anchor iu the stream. 

The composer of this subject is unknotvn to us, but the plate was Hthographed by Signore 
Canova ; the lettering by Inibert. 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

The inscription aboye the device is " Temporal Manifestation in Eternal Duration," signify- 
ing that Time is evolved from, and surrounded by Eternity. This idea is here made palpable 


to the eye, wherein three beautiful females express the three only modes that we can conceive 
of Duration, viz. — 

First. — That portion which is Past, whose origin our finite minds cannot compass. 

Second. — The Present, which is an ever-moving mathematical point. 

Third. — The Future, which is equally with the Past, beyond the sp.m of created faculties. 

In this device the lady representing the Past is gliding off into Eternity, with an air of sad- 
ness and sorrow ; she who personidcs tha Present, has an expression of placid tranquillity, for- 
getful thut her existence is but instantaneous ; and the representative of the Future, comes smil- 
ing forward, full of hopes of ceaseless felicity. 

These emblems are certainly very expressive of the activity of the scene we occupy in this 
tlccting world of ever changing temporality, embraced in a boundless eternity. 

As verbal language is very useful in elucidating that of painting, so vice versa, we may find 
the pictorial language of equal service in explaining verbal. We apprehend the composer of 
this subject had in view the primary elements of langu.ige in (he construction of the tenses of 
the verb. However this may be, we find literary men using the very same ideas in explaining 
grammar, an instance of which we find in an " Essay on Language," followed by a grammar on 
these principles, by W. S. Cardell, Esq., published by Bliss and White, of this City, where this 
eminent author limits the number of tenses to three. Moreover, the enlightened conducters of 
our New York High School, with all correct grammarians, have adopted these truly philosophi- 
cal principles, in defiance of gothio barbarism, scholastic quackery, monkish ignorance, and 
selfish imposition. 

In this manner do the Arts and Sciences mutually support and elucidate each other, and mani- 
fest their sisterly affinity. 

Were this the place for such speculations, we could easily demonstrate from Ibis hieroglyphic 
emblem, the ceaseless activity of every verb, for we can no more neutralize the action of 

ft\ 5i ^ -^^ 



t^ y,,A- /^^i?' 


a verb, than we can arrest the flight of Time, for both are co-incident, co-active, and contem- 


This subject was originally composed by S. Shelley, Esq. an em'nent English artist, which he 
called " The Hours, or the Past, Present, and Coming Hours ;" and is now lithographed by a 
young Lady of this City, for the Students of Columbia College. 



{Lithographic Plate.) 

This is perhaps the greatest curiosity we can present to the public upon this occasion, more 
especially when we contemplate what Nieuw Nederlandt was at that day, when compared with 
what it is at this period under the name of New York ; at that time it could not contain more 
than one hundred inhabitants at most, and perhaps as many soldiers within the Fort, under the 
command of Governor Van Twiller, — but now we number upwards of one hundred and seventy 
thousand, and they not only daily but hourly increasing. 

" This view of Fort Amsterdam, on the Manhattan, is taken from an ancient engraving, exe- 
cuted in Holland. The Fort was erected in 1623, but finished, upon the above model, by 
Governor Van Twiller in 1633." Such is the account we have on the plate. 

The picture is a birdseye view of the localities around what is now New York, apparently 
done from a recollection of their situation, as seen from the Heights above Weehawk, by an 
intelligent Dutch oflScer ; this is sufficiently manifested in the superlative beauty and accuracy 
of the Fort, shipping, canoes, and Indians. 



(Lithographic Plate.) 

This is perhaps the greatest curiosity we can present to the public upon this occasion, more 
especially when we contemplate what Nieuw Nederlandt was at that day, when compared with 
what it is at this period under the name of New York ; at that time it could not contain more 
than one hundred inhabitants at most, and perhaps as many soldiers within the Fort, under the 
command of Governor Van Twiller, — but now we number upwards of one hundred and seventy 
thousand, and they not only daily but hourly increasing. 

" This view of Fort Amsterdam, on the Manhattan, is taken from an ancient engraving, exe- 
cuted in Holland. The Fort was erected in 1623, but finished, upon the above model, by 
Governor Van Twiller in 1635." Such is the account we have on the plate. 

The picture is a birdseye view of the localities around what is now New York, apparently 
done from a recollection of their situation, as seen from the Heights above Weehawk, by an 
intelligent Dutch ofScer ; this is sufficiently manifested in the superlative beauty and accuracy 
of the Fortj shipping, canoes, and Indians. 

Nieuw Nederl iik 


Nearly in the centre of the subject stands the elegantly regul;ir " Fort Amsterdam ;" being » 
square fortress, standing nearly due North and South, with bastions at each angle, (as it was in 
our time,) with a half-moon covering the Eastern curtain, and a demi-horn work covering the 
Western, with a ditch surrounding the whole : on the salient angle of the South-west bastion is 
the Dutch standard hoisted. Outside the Fort, from the salient angle of the North-west, to that 
of the South-east bastions, are four clusters of a few houses each, and still more to the East is a 
windmill, the whole standing upon the Southernmost point of the Island of Manhatans ; the 
limits towards the right of the picture admits no more of the Island than to Domme's Hook, 
now the foot of Harrison Street. Over the Fort is seen Long Island, across the East River, 
with Guanns Creek, seeming to run far into that Island. The artist appears to have forgotten 
Governor's Island, if it had existence at that period as an Nl md, but it was perhaps only a projected 
Hook, like its near neighbour Yellow Hook ; the neck which then united it to Long Island 
having been since washed away, by the diurnal flux and reflux, now forms Buttermilk Channel ; in 
the same manner as Sandy Hook, formerly a Peninsula, has within a few years become an Island, 
by the ceaseless washing of an impetuous tide, and tlie encroachment of the Athmtic waves. 

Directly oflf the Southern point of Manhatans Islind, towards the left of the picture, (just on 
the spot where our fleet of steam-gallies formed the liu'; of procession to Sandy Hook, on our 
great Fourth of November,) are three armed ships, at anchor in the North River, with their 
heads towards the East ; above these vessels is seen the horizon at the Narrows, and under 
them is the Jersey shore, at Paulus Hook ; beneath is Hoboken, on the foreground, with the 
Bay of Aharsimus between them. 

Again, immediately under the South point of Manhatans (now New York) Island is a canoe, 
with outriggers at stem and stern, in which are two Indians paddling it ; then abreast of Paulus 
Hook is a pettyaugur, with leeboards and a high poop stern, surmounted by a Dutch marine 
flag, scudding before the South-west wind, up the Mauritius, Hudson, or North River. 

On the foreground is an elegantly formed canoe, with five Indians on board, four of which 
stand up paddling along, two on each side placed alternately, and one seated on what in this situ- 
ation may be denominated the stern; the two paddlers on the starboard have quivers filled with 
arrows on theirbacks ; they are all naked to their waistcloths, most probably of skins, with each 



two long straight feathers for their crests, as all the other Indians in the piece have ; at each 
end of this canoe, which seems calculated to sail either way, the stem and stern are raised above 
about one foot over the gunnels, and project horizontnlly at both ends, what may be termed a 
bowsprit, finished by a spherical head about the size of a mans ; these bowsprits or handles, 
seem an ingenious contrivance for lifting the canoe and carrying it on the l:ind, by two men 
hoisting it on their shoulders, and thus, as on a pole, moving it from place to place, and that 
with the greatest expedition. 

Over the bow of the canoe, towards the right of the picture, is a Dutch long-boat, with high 
poop, in which amidships are two sailors rowing, at the bow is an outlook man, standing up, and 
seated at the stern are two soldiers, with raised pikes or muskets. And again, on the left of this 
subject, in the Bay of Aharsimus, are two common canoes, without the outrigger apparatus — in 
the nearest is seen one Indian, and in the other are two paddlers, drest as those in the large war 
canoe, the whole of them with their heads towards the East. On the plate over Long Island, in 
the sky, are the words " T'Fort Nieuw Amsterdam op Manhatans," and at the top of the plate 
are the words " Nieuw Nederhindt." 

As a work of art this view is very curious ; it is evidently an effort of strong memory, even 
allowing for the omission of Governor's Island, which the artist has apparently united to Long 
Island ; and most probably it was so at that period, for in the memory of those still alive, the 
Buttermdk Ch:innel was nearly fordable, where now there is six or seven fathoms depth of water. 

The general proportions and shape of the land are tolerably correct, and the shipping, with 
the canoes, elegantly so ; but in the proportion of the shipping to the extent of the land, there 
is a wonderful mistake, for the distance between New York and Paulus Hook, we know to be a 
mile and a quarter, which the length of these three ships do more than fill up, thus making 
each vessel to be from stem to stern half a mde long ; let this be corrected and all would be 

The Fort Amsterdam of Governor Van Twiller remained until our time, and was demo- 
lished about the year seventeen hundred and eighty-nine, with a view to build the late Govern- 
ment House upon its scite ; but it likewise is removed, and in its place stand the elegant 
suite of buildings facing the Bowling Green. 


Fort Amsterdam occupied the two blocks of houses formed by the Bowling Green, State, 
Pearl, and VVhitehull Streets; the salient angles of the North-east and North-west bastions, 
formed the angles at the corner of Whitehall Street and the Bowling Green, whilst that of the 
Bowhng Green and State Street formed the other ; and again, the salient angles of the South- 
east and South-west bastions, form now the corner of Whitehall and Pearl Streets, and that of 
Pearl and State Street formed the other salient angle. 

The half-moon, covering the East curtain of the Fort, extended across and beyond Whitehall 
Street; and the demi-hornwork, covering ihe West Curtain, crossed State Street, and projected 
some dbtance into our present Battery : although the great gate is not represented on this pic- 
ture, yet we know it was in the centre of the North Curtain, facing the Bowhng Green. 

The cluster of houses, at the salient angle of the North-west bastion, stood upon the block 
contained within Broadway, Murkettield, Greenwich Streets, and Beaver Lane ; the cluster 
standing off the North-east bastion was contained in the block within Beaver, Broad, Stone 
Streets, and Broadway ; and between these two stand a cluster in the centre of what is now 
Broadway near the Bowling Green ; and a fourth cluster stands where now is Water and Moore 
Streets ; a little to the East of these is a windmill, near that creek upon which now stands 
Broad Street. 

Upon what is now the Bowling Green stands a pole or gibbet for the punishment of trans- 
gressors, on which they were hoisted by the waist, and were there suspended during a longer 
or shorter period in proportion to merited suffering and disgrace. 

This is the oldest view of the City of New York known to be extant, and appears to have 
been taken shortly after the first settlement. We arc indebted for this plate to the researches of 
Joseph W. Moulton, Esq. the historian of New York. It is inserted in this work chiefly with a 
view to contrast the then situation of the city and country with its present powerful condition. 

From the period at which the view was taken, when about twenty houses composed the set- 
tlement, the city in the space of two centuries h;is increased to a population of one hundred and 
seventy thousand souls, and become the grinl commercial emporium of the Western world. 
The power and resources of the Stite h ive increased in an equ..l ratio. It is to be observed, 
however, that this great increase has cliitifly taken place within the last forty years. The grand 


Canal which has just been finished, is a proof of the power and enterprise of the citizens of 
New York. An idea of the vast commerce of the City may be formed from the circumstance 
of the Custom-house having paid into the Treasury of the United States, for tonnage and duties, 
during the eight years the Canal was making, the enormous sum of sixty-four milhons of 

The plate is curious in another point of view, by aflbrding an opportunity of contrasting the 
water-craft of that day with those of the present. At the time the view was taken the noble 
Hudson bore on its bosom only the rude canoe of the Indian now it has not less than two thou- 
sand sail of vessels of every description, and numbers of steam-gallies plying to the different 
cities and towns on its banks, and some of those g;illies frequently carry five hundred passengers.! 

It seems difficult to realize the idea that in the space of two centuries, so splendid a fleet as 
that exhibited on the Fourth of November, should occupy the waters, where formerly the 
largest vessel to be seen on the river was the war canoe of the Indians, and where the solitude 
of the vast forest was only interrupted by the howl of the panther or other beasts of prey. 

Beneath the view is a plan of the river in the vicinity of Albany, then called Fort Orange. 

* See Mr. Coldeu's Memoir. 

t In order to convey an idea of the size of the steam-boats which composed the Grand Fleet of the Fourth 
of November, it may be well to state that they were from 150 to upwards of 500 tons. The Chancellor Living- 
ston, the Flag Ship, was 320 tons; the James Kent, 410; the Washington, and Fulton, 350; the Constitution, 
Constellation, and Chief Justice Marshall, 250 tons each, and none of the others less than 150 tons. The wholf 
tnnnage of the twenty-nine steam-gallies employed that day waa six thousand long. 



On the same plate with the View of Nieuw Nederl indt, and heneath it, is a Map of part of 
the North River, for about six miles above, and as many below. Fort Orange, now the City of 
Albany , this extent of country is entitled '' Ftansehier's Wyck ;" it is sub-divided into four sec- 
tions, Fort Orange being the central point. On the West of the river that section North of the 
Fort is called " VVeelys Dael ;" the one South of it, " Bylaers Dael ;" on the East of the river, 
opposite Weelys Dael, is " Falfrajs Uael ;" and South of it, opposite Bylaers Dael, " Twill(>rs," North of the Fort, on the banks of the river, are Bloemertsburg. Greynbosch, and 
Monemins Casteel ; South of the Fort are Goodynsburg, and many settlements down the river. 

Opposite Fort Orange, on the Eastern bank of the river, is Dc Lacbsburg ; and towards the 
North Dickops buys, and Unumats Casteel. The two Casteels are skilfully placed on the most 
Northerly frontier, to defend it from attacks from above. On the island next below Fort Orange 
is Renselaerburg and Weelysburg ; still lower are Smacks and Beeren Islands. The river 
itself is named " Mauritius oft Noord Rivier." 

Reckoning from the South with reference to the I\Iap, we find the following — 

1. Beeren Eylandt nu Renselaers Eylandt. 

2. Dose Keel heest een waterval. 

3. Bouw landt N 1 lang 1325, treeden lang broadt 536. 

4. N 2 & 4 lang 2.33b, treeden broadt 300 treeden. 

8. N 9 la, 450, 6. 60. 

9. N 5 la, 650, 6. 54. 

6. N 6 lang 5(l0, broadt, 325. 

6. N 3 lang 2030, broadt iiiG treeden. 

7. Smacks Eylandt. 

10. Vlack landt met weynick boomen. 

1 1. V'erdron cleen landt. 

12. Riot Valley. 

13 Goodyns Eylanden. 
14. Paep SykouekeesKill. 


15. Goodyns Kill liepst een Waterval. 

16. De Laets Moulen Kills aende Waterval. 

17. Bloemerts Kill 

18. Bloemerts (3) Kytnnrlpn. 

19. Renselaers Kill ueude Waterval. 

20. Waterval. 

21. Waterval. 

Some of the lots of land are laid down rectangularly ; but others in a concentric, semicir- 
cular, or bow form, the first constituting one lot, the n;xt concentric one another, the third 
another, at suitable distances apart, with larger radii, so that each lot, except the first, touches 
the river at two points ; this system of lotting has this advantage, that although back lots they 
still communicate with the river On the Msp, between the word " Ranselaer" above, and 
'•' Wyck," beneath, there is a curious volant like indescribable animal, within a four sided shield, 
the upper broader than the lower side ; the contours of it formed by waved and voluted lines, 
but the one side uniform symetrically with the other ; to which is added " Founded in 1630." 


This View of " Nieuw Nederlandt" is borrowed from the " History of the State of New 
York, Part II." by Joseph W. Moulton, Esq. The Map of Renselaer Wyrk, was reduced by 
Mr. M. from a large parchment map in possession of the present proprietor of that ancient 



15 Gontlyns Kill lieest pen Waterval. 

16. Ue L:iets Moulen Kills aende Wuterval. 

17. Bloemerts Kill 

18. Bloemerts (3) Kylindpn. 

19. Renselaers Kill aeude Waterval. 

20. Waterval. 

21. Waterval. 

Some of the lots of land are laid down rectangularly ; but others in a concentric, semicir- 
cular, or bow form, the first constituting one lot, the nvxt concentric one another, the third 
another, at suitable distances apart, with larger radii, so that each lot, except the first, touches 
the river at two points ; this system of lotting has this advantage, that although back lots they 
still communicate with the river On the M^ip, between the word " Ranselaer" above, and 
" Wyck," beneath, there is a curious volant like indescribable animal, within a four sided shield, 
the upper broader than the lower side ; the contours of it formed by waved and voluted lines, 
but the one side uniform symetrically with the other ; to which is added " Founded in 1630." 


This View of " Nieuw Nederlandt" is borrowed from the " History of the State of New 
York, Part II." by Joseph W. Moulton, Esq. The Map of Renselaer Wyck, was reduced by 
Mr. M. from a large parchment map in possession of the present proprietor of that ancient 

^ ^^^^^ ^^^^®J«A^a(B). 

^i^jviL. 'i?a:jLjE 







{Lithographic Plate.) 

This Fire Engine is mounted on a carpeted car, with all its appropriate instruments, hose, 
axe, &c. and drawn by four horses ; the leaders with mounted postilions ; those in the shafts are 
guided by the driver, seated on the Ci«r ; b -ttveen him and the Ensjine stand two Firemen, one 
bearing the pipe, the other the axft, both in their appropriate costume ; the nearest, being Pipe- 
man, carries the Pipe, and the other the axe. 

This Lithographic Plate was designed and drawn on a Bavarian Lithographic Stone Plate, by 
Signore D. Cauova. 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

This superb Engine is borne on a carpeted car, drawn by four horses, with postilions 
mounted ; in front of it stand two Firemen in their appropriate uniforms, the nearest is the 


Pipeman, with his pipe ; (the first man. upon an alarm, seizing the Pipe is the Pipeman.) In the 
rear of the Engine stand two Linkboys, with lanterns shouldered. Our limits do not permit us 
to enter into minute details of the beautiful ornaments of this machine, or the highly polished 
condition, and its continual state of preparation for action. 

This plate was designed and lithographed by W. H. Tuthill, Esq. 

ENGINE, No. 15. 

{Lithographic Plate.) 

This most elegant machine is represented as borne on a carpeted car, and dr,iwn by four 
horses, with mounted postilions. In front of the Engine, on the car, are two Firemen, the 
nearest being Pipeman, and Qanked by two Linkboys, carrying lanterns. In this picture the 
postilions appear to be mounted on the off horses instead of the near ones ; in the original 
design they no doubt must have been correct, but owing to the inadvertance of the Lithographer, 
he has neglected to attend to the reversing of the impression in the printing. 


This is lithographed in the ink style, and in lines, in imitation of Woodcut, by W. P. 
Morgan, Esq. 




L,/'':.-^,^^y,A,-c /^,^^^ !•/' /^i.r/ t-£-' .^/-?«. K^/C: 

V . 

I ^^^'i^. 



jXAti «P IS ILIRl «j 




,./^ A,„ ,/• A.4,, *^. ^., i5. 


(SS1S.^V:^]0) C-^M-AliLi CJiE]!Li]iB]iBM.JLTI €3 1^ 

CliH^TT (®.J^ IF I m IE C®AllF.Air^ :^® 4klio 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

This elegant Engine is mounted on a car, carpeted, and beautifully decorated with festoonS: 
and drawn by four horses, led by four colored grooms, dressed in Turkish costume ; on the top 
of the Engine is the American flag upon the engine pipe, as a flag staff. 

Standing upon the car is a Fireman flanked on either side by a Linkboy. Our limits will 
not admit of more minute detail on the particulars, but by inspection of the plate it will be better 
understood than by any verbal description. 

This was the first Engine that was lithographed, and that by Mr. Imbert. 


[Lithographic Plate.) 

This fine Engine is mounted on a car, carpeted, and beautifully decorated with festooned 
drapery over vallences ; it is drawn by four horses ; postilions are mounted on the leaders ; 
the driver is seated on the car, and in his rear, but in front of the Engine, is a Fireman carrying 
a Banner, supported on the right and left by a member of the Company. The back ground to 
this Engine is taken from a picture painted on the back of the condenser, and represents an 
imaj^inary, rather than a real view of the Aqueduct Bridge at Little Falls, over the Mohawk 
River, with Locks and other circumstances attending Canals. 


This subject was designed and lithographed by W. H. Tuthill. 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

This elegantly lithographefl picture represents tlie beautiful Engine, No. 2?. It is borne on 
a carpeted car, drawn by four hor.ics ; the two leaders have mounted postilions, the others are 
guided by the driver, seated upon the car; in front of this machine stands the I'ipcman, holding 
his pipe, and flanked by two Linkhoys, bearing lanterns ; on the top of the condenser, on an 
elevating supporter, is perched an eagle on a globe, (being the crest of the State Arms,) and in 
its bill it holds a triumphal wreath. 

This subject was designed from the Engine, and lithographed by W. P. Morgan, Esq. 


{Lithographic Plate) 

This Engine is mounted on a carpeted car, the drop elegantly festooned with rolled drapery, 
and drawn by four horses ; the driver is seated on the car, and in his rear, but in front of the 
Engine, are three Firemen standing, the centre one bearing a banner, surmounted by an eagle 
fluttering and perched on a globe, holding the number 7 in his bill ; on the banner is an eques- 
trian figure of the youthful La Fayette. The banner is stayed with cords by the flanking Fire- 
men, the nearest being the I'ipeman, with his pipe., 

This plate was designed and lithographed by W. H. Tuthill, Esq. and printed by Mr. Imbert. 









(^Lithographic Plate ) 

This plate represents the Hooks and Ladders as they are used in actual service, on a long 
truck carriage, which is drawn by four horses ; upon the two lea lers are mounted postilions, and 
on the truck in front is seated the driver ; in the rear, the machine is steered with a tiller, by a 
Fireman. On the top of the truck a pyramid is raised of Hooks and Ladders, as in real action, 
with iwo Axemen mounted on it — on each side are two Hookmen, supporting the Ladders. The 
top of the pyramid is surmounted by a Hag-staff, bearing the United States Flag, under which is 
a floating pendant, with the inscription " We Raze to Save," indicative of the principal subject 
of the operations of this Company, in pulling down what would be only fuel for the flames, or 
to prevent their extension. 

This plate was designed and Ltbographed by Signore Canova. 



The festivities of the great day of consummation were very appropriately closed by a most 
brilliant Pyrotechnic display, exhibited upon the roof of the City Hall ; imagination must sup- 
ply the place of description of this scene — the pen and pencil give it up, those alone who were 
witnesses can conceive its glory as an expression of the complicated feelings of a nation 
exulting in the great work of its own hands, the result of its own conceptions humanly speaking. 

This copperplate goes as far as the graphic art can do, to aid the imagination in forming an 
adequate idea of the form and manner of the display ; but the life and soul is wanting, which is 
not within the compass of the art. This superb edifice of native white marble is here viewed 
as from the South-west ; the elegant dome is immersed and enveloped in volcanoes, cataracts, 
and volumes of the devouring element, pouring forth from burnmg mouths burstings, explosions, 
and spoutings, floods of appalling fire, that dashed upon the bedimmed eye, and deafened the 
astonished ear. 

Above this pictorial representation is this inscription — " A view of the magnificent and ex- 
traordinary Fire Works, exhibited on the New York City Hall, on the evening of the Celebra- 
tion of the Grand Canal, November 4th, 1825, by Richard Willcox, Engineer," &c. and beneath 
it — "Explanation." "The City Hail was illuminated with 1,542 wax candles, 464 lamps, and 
310 variegated lamps ; total, 2,306. To eclipse this great effusion of light was not within the 
power of o dinary Pire Works, hence extraordinary means were employed, which consisted of 
13 compounded gerbs, each containing 58 pounds of brilliant Chinese and diamond fires, which 


changed alternately. These fires were supported by a back ground of spur fire, which pro- 
jected 1,500 brilliant stars, intersecting each other in fanciful directions. During the evening 
were projected 320 4lb. rockets ; 30 91b. and 24 20lb. rockets — total, 374 ; with a great variety 
of minor amusing pieces. The general bursts of simultaneous applause from a great concourse 
of citizens, afford the best panegyric on the decided superiority of these Fire Works, both as 
to extraordinary grandeur and brilliant display." 

R. Willcox, Invt. & Del. Prud'home, Sc. 




(^Lithographic Plate.) 

It is not simply for the gratification of the curious, but rather as being one of the most useful 
potentialities of Mr. Senefelder's great discovery, that we have introduced in this place a spe- 
cimen of Autographic Fac-simiUes, positively impressed from the manuscript of the writers. 

Any one wishing to have his writing multiplied has only to provide himself with Transfer 
Paper, instead of common paper, and Lithographic Writing Ink, instead of common, to accom- 
plish the whole business, for these are the only requisite instruments. These materials are 
always to be procured in every Lithographic establishment, and as Mr. Imbert's is the only effi- 
cient one we know of in this City, we refer those who wish it to him, 79, Murray Street. When 
we contemplate the endless variety of uses to which this art may be applied, it is vain to attempt 
to enumerate them ; every one can make the application to himself, whether for literary, mili- 
tary, professional, mercantile, or other purposes. The operation being so simple, cheap, and 
easy, will no doubt be found to be greatly exercised in this, <is its utility has been tested in every 
country where it has been mtroduced, and for such purposes as the slowness and expence of 
typographical printing is found inadequate to accomphsh. 


These Autograph Fac-similies speak for themselves by whose hands they were executed ; 
and, as usual, it is printed by Mr. Imbert, or his assistant Signore Cuppa, pronounced Jlnglice 

Pritiled Jirectlv from tke oricyinal writuvp- by mfaixs of 

u <ru^ fa^crzrr. — //^ 

--2fe c7 iir^a'rtaji'm.eox/^, 'foy'uii- -C^a/na^ '^a^rca^ '^<^£/^£ci^i^^-7t^\y'^-co^Cc>r'^Cy 

I — --'• - ' — 


{Lithographic Plate.) 

As we have given a specimen of Lithographic Transfer from Autograph Manuscripts, we ia 
this plate give a specimen of it from Copperplates ; the process is equally simple in both ; it is 
only printing with lithographic ink, from the copperplate, instead of common printing ink ; and 
upon appropriate transfer paper, instead of common printing paper. The impression is with- 
out delay applied to the stone, put under the press, and it is completed. 

We have, in this case, used the copperplates of the Corporation Badge and Invitation Card, 
on purpose to exhibit at once the precision of the operation ; both bemg inserted in this 
volume. The great advantage obtained in this process is, that as a copperplate wears away by 
abrasion at every impression, so the number of impressions are limited ; but, through the 
medium of the lithographic press they may be limitless. 

The only circumstance that we have to regret is, that we were under the necessity to use in 
this case, worn out copperplates ; had we have had early impressions from the original state of 
the plates equally good impressions would no doubt have been obtained, as may evidently be 
perceived, and thus would have justified a prior remark, to this amount — that Lithography was 
equal to the finest Copperplate through the medium of transfer ; and thus it becomes a means 
by which engraving on copper, even the finest, may be multiplied, " ad infinitum ;" a most in- 
valuable gift to mankind in thus multiplying with facility the works of the first-rate artists. 


This was printed from the original plates, engraved by Mr. A B. Durand, on steel, and trans- 
ferred to copper by Mr. Cyrus Durand ; again printed by Mr. Elias Wade, jun. with lithographic 
ink, which was transferred to stone by Mr. Imbert, and finally lithographically printed by him. 


We cannot dismiss this Report without remarking, that this volume, with all its plates, can 
give but a very inadequate idea of the circumstances attending the great occasion that it com- 
memorates ; the descriptions, both verbal and pictorial, are but a small specimen of what might 
be told, or graphically represented in the language of picture, of the history, feelings, and 
scenes manifested in our rational exultation upon this glorious victory over nature's most stub- 
born bulwarks. 

In our remarks we have had occasion (6 notice some of the most useful and beneficial im- 
provements in this remarkable Jge of Discoveries. i'lrst — who does not feel the value of the 
immortal Fulton's application of steam to the purposes of navigation. Secondly — it is to be 
hoped that soon this country will likewise feel the useful importance of Senefelder's curious 
discovery of the Art of Lithographic Printing. And thirdly — we cannot avoid noticing Browere's 
discovery of the Art of making Fac-similies of living subjects from nature. 

Amongst these three discoverers, we are proud to find two of them native Americans, viz. 
Fulton and Browere ; others might be mentioned, but we forbear the details. 

In getting up the plates for this singular work, the artists have endeavoured to keep pace 
with the typographical department, in which they have advanced prettj' nearly with equal steps ; 
had it not been that they were unavoidably delayed at the lithographic press, the works of art 
would perhaps h;ive anticipated the typography. At all events, it is a very remarkable circum- 
stance that a work of this description, with so many plates, should have been accomplished in the 
very short space of six months ; for although it is the production of a great variety of intellect 


to compose it, and of hands to execute it, yet nevertheless their labors were not of that descrip- 
tion as by mutual aid to facilitate, but rather to retard it ; and had not the most rigid superin- 
tendence, skilful vigilance, and prompt encouragement and assistance been afforded, it would 
perhaps have required years to accomplish the achievement. 

That there is very considerable variety, and shades of comparative merit in our plates, it is 
natural to expect ; every one in this respect will judge for himself, and it will very possibly be 
discovered that those which display least excellence as works of art, amply compensate by the 
interest or curiosity of the subject. Although it was desirable that first-rate talents should be 
solely employed, yet to get the work completed as soon as practicable, with a view to gratify 
the public mind highly excited, naturally weighed with the Committee to use the most expedi- 
tious system of operations, consistent with doing tolerable justice to the occasion. 

It may be objected that wc have two many plates in this book ; but this only betrays igno- 
rance, for upon most subjects, especially of the descriptive kind, the rudest outline, if but toler- 
ably correct, will convey more ideas than the most elaborately elegant verbal diction ; hence 
true philosophy has ever determined that pictorial language has been, at least, of as much utility 
in the communication of genuine knowledge as verbal ; nay, in the generality of cases, it carries 
the palm, for this reason — that a simple sketch, diagram, or hieroglyph, on most subjects, will 
tell to the understanding more than volumes are competent to accomplish ; and therefore, with 
some reason, it has been the universal practice, even with the learned, to use the term " Arts 
and Sciences," as indicative of the rank which these two modes of expression take, in their real 
value to mankind. 

That the language of picture touches the soul with as much puiisency as verbal, a celebrated 
poet sings when he says, " Poema Pictura erit," a Poem is but a Picture ; for the same idea 
that is conceived in the mind, may, generally speaking, be expressed in either manner. But we 
must grant that sometimes the one, at other times the other, are found most convenient for bre- 
vity's sake, or other circumstances ; wherefore, it has been thus far found useful to employ the 
dialect of the pencil, to the extent hereu ith exhibited. The chief object has been to adopt the 
mode of expression, verbal or pictorial, by which, with the utmost precision might be communi- 
cated, a correct idea of our Grand Canal Celebration, — its attendant circumst.inces and history, 
in the most concise, but comprehensive m;umer practicable. But when thus both systems are 
united, we have the most perfect mode of conveying ideas to distant ages and nations, that man- 
kind are as yet possessed of. 



My dear Sir. 

Agreeably to your request I have endeavoured to give " A brief explanatory 
Report of the different Prints, &.c. in your Book ;" imperfect as ray powers are to do the sub- 
ject justice, you have it in that state in which it is. Hoping for the indulgence of the Committee 
for unavoidable flulures in a task in which it would have been impossible to have succeeded at 
all, my dear Sir, without your kind su^estions. 

My imperfection is not in volition but competency, therefore I commit it to your's, the com- 
mittee's, and the public's liberality. 

My DEAR Sir, 

1 have the honor to remain, 

Your obedient Servant, 


79, Liberty Street, New York, May 28, 1826. 

Hon, Richard Riker, Chairman of the Committee of the Corporation, 
on the Grand Canal Celebration. 



Resolved, — That the thanks of the Corporation of the City of New York be presented to 
William L Stone, Esq for his Narrative of the Canal Celebration, prepared by him at the 
request of the Committee of this Board. 

And, as a testimony of the approbation of the Common Council, of the manner in which he 
has executed the wishes of their Committee, It is ordered, — That a Medal of silver, a Box, and 
a copy of Mr. Colden's Memoir, be presented to him in the name of the Corporation of the 
City of New York. 

Resolved, — That the thanks of the Corporation be presented to Archibald Robertson, Esq. 
for his description of the plates, prepared by him at the request of the Committee of this 

And, as a testimony of the approbation of the Common Council, of the manner in which he 
has executed the vvishes of their Committee, It is ordered, — That a Medal of silver, a Box, and 
a copy of Mr. Colden's Memoir, be presented to liim in the name of the Corporation of the 
City of New York. 


rally by lib Predecessor the Hon. W31. 

1, referred to a Committee, viz. — the Recoder, Aldermen Mann. 

Preface, . • 

Memoir, .... 

Note to the Memoii-, 

Thauk? of tlie Common Council to Mr. Golden for liis Memoir, 

Appe.vdix, .... 

Members of the Common Council in 1325, 

Members of the Common Council in lH-26, 

The induction of the Hon. Philip Hose into the chair of May 

Paulding, ..... 

Commemoration of the Completion of the Erie Canal, by the Coriioration of the City of New Vork, 
Report of R. Riker, Asa Mans, and Thomas Bolton, Committee of the Corporation not detailed on 

other business. 
Preparatory .\rrans:ements. 
Resolution of the Common Cou 

Davis, Bolton, and Agsew, 
Report of the above Committee, 
Meeting; of the Committees of the 
Report of the said Committees on 
Letter from Mr. Wm. C. Bouck i 

Arrangements made by the Cities of Jfew fork and .Albany, 
Order of the Firing from Albany to Sandy Hook, 
Order of the Return Fire to Albany, 
Further Demonstrations of Respect, 
Military Demonstrations of Respect, 

Further Information shewing that the Great Work approaches to i 
Morning of the Twenty-sixth of October, 182.5, 

Final Arrangements for the Grand Canal Celebration, by the City of New York, 
Regulations for the Grand A'[Uatic Display, 
Regulations for the Grand Procession through the City, 
Order of the Societies, Citizens, and Military, 

Evening Celebration. — Guests invited by the Corporation to join the Aquatic Procession, 
Corj-oration Guests. ... 

Report of Alderman King and Davis. ... 


i Corporation and Citizens, 
1 the Grand Canal Colel^rati 
to Gen. Van Rensselaer, 

n the City Hall, 

I close. 

Committees iVom Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Utica, Canaudaijiia, Weed^port, and Albany, 
Ilepoi't of Alderman Wyckoff and Mr. Assistant Ho.\E, 

Report of Aldermen Cowdrey and Webb, and Messrs. Assistants Acnew and Hedden, 
Report of Alderman Reed, and Assistants St. John, Duwscomb, Rathbone, and Burtsell, 



Explanation of the Vievr of the Fleet, prep; 


Marijie Society of the City of New York, 

New York Nautical Institution, 

Pilot's Charitable Society, 

New York Waterman's Society. 


orm the Line, 

201, 376 
203, 375 
205, 376 
207, 387 



Canal Celebration ; Order for the Proces! 

Trumpeters, Bands of Musicians, 

Horticultural Society, 

Tailors — Journeymen Tailors Society, 

Inspectors of Pot and Pearl Ashes, 

Bakers Benefit Society, 

Coopers — Journeymen Coopers Society, 

Butchers — Butchers Benevolent Society, 

Butchers Benevolent Association, 





Tanners, Curriers, and Leather Dressers, 

Conlwainers Society, 


Hatters Society, 

Masons — Journeymen Masons Society, 

House Pamters Society, 

■Stone Cutter; — Journejonen Stone Cutters Society. 


Fancy and Windsor Chairmakers — Employers and Journeymens Societi 

Potters Society, . ... 

Saddlers and Harness Makers, 

The Union Society of Shipwrights and Caulkei-s, 

Boat Builders Association, 

AVhitehall Watermen, . ... 

Ropemaker? — Ropemakers Benevolent As 

Apprentices Library. 



Fire Department, 

Washmjton Company, No. 20, 

Tradesmen Company, No. 37, 

East River Company, No. 42, 

Franklin Company, No. 39, 

Company No. 15, 

Equitable Company, No. 36, 

Eagle Company, No. 13, 

Scott Company, No. 17, 

United States Company, No. 23, 

Mechanic Company, 

Hook and Ladder Company, 

./Etna Company, No. 16, 

Manhattan Company, No. 8, 

Clinton Company, No. 41, 

North River Company. No. 27, 

Phenix Company, No. 22, 

Company No. 33, 

New York Company, No. 3, 

La Fayette Company, No. 7, 

Niagara Company, No. 10, 

American Company, No. 4, 

Chatham Company, No. 2, 

Protection Company, No. 5, 

Company, No. 24, 

Jefferson Company, .\o. 26, 

Hose Company, No. 1, 

Delegates from the Fire Companies, 

Delegates from the Engineers, 

Delegates from the Supply Eu,'ine, 

Delegates from the Hook and Ladder Companii 


Delegates to confer with Oie Corporation, 


Ode lor the Celebration, 


Booksellers, Stationers, and Music Dealers, 

Student; of Columbia College, 

Students of Medicine, 

OiJicei-, &c. of the Militia, 

Most .\acicnt and Honorable Fraternity of Fre 

Tinplate Workers and Coppersmiths, 

Recapitulation of the City Procession, 

Exhibition of Fire Works, by R. Willcox, Engineer, 
Adilresiiif Governor Cliston, 
Address of Professor Mitchill, 

269, 394 



Letter fi-om Dr. Coventry, of Utica, to the JIayor of New York, 

The Mayor's Answer, 

Mr. Absolum Bull's Letter to the Mayor of New York, 

Answered by J. Morton, Esq. 

Toasts given on board the steam-boats by the Corporation, 



Narrative of the voyage of the Seneca Chief (first Canal-boat), to Sandy Hook, and its return to Lake 

Erie, with the Festivities observed in honor of the completion of the Grand Erie Canal, 291, 369 

Departure of the Seneca Chief from Buifalo, 
Is joined by " Noali's Ark," and " Niagara" of Black Rock, 
Arrival at Lockport, . . „ . . 

Do. HoUey and Newport, .... 

Do. Rochester; "Young Lion of the West," joins the procession. 

Do. Palmyra and Macedon, . . 

Do. Newark, Lyons, and Clyde, . ... 

Do. Buck\alle, Port Byron, and Weedsport, 

Do. Syracuse and Manlius, .... 

Do. Rome and Utica, . , ... 

Do. Little Falls, . . ... 

Do. Fort Plain, Palatme, and Schenectady, 

Do. across the Aqueduct over the Mohawk, 

Do. Albany; Procession met by Aldermen Wyckoff and Hone, 
Grand Salute at Albany, and procession to the Capitol, .... 

The Address of Wm. James, Esq. . ... 

Answer of Lieutenant Governor Tallmadge, ... 

Decorations of the Assembly Chamber, . . . 

Rejoicings at Albany, .... 

List of Nortt River Squadron, Szc. under the command of Admiral Rhiud, 
Appearance of the Fleet, — Arrival at Hudson, 
Arrival of the Fleet at Catskill, Red Hook Landmg, and Hyde Park, . . 315 

Do. at Poughkeepsie, Newburgh, and West Point, . . . 316 

Do. at New York, — tlie Flag-ship receives salutations from the steam-galley Wash- 

ington, . ..... 317 

The escorting Fleet saluted by the British Ships of War, — the Corporation and Guests embark on board 

the Washington, &c. and the Ladies on board the barge Lady Clinton, . . 313 

Procession of the Fleet to, and return from, the Navy Yard, . . . . 319 

Ship Hamlet towed by the Oliver Ellsworth and Bolivar, . . . 319 

Governor Clinton pours the Waters of Erie into the Atlantic, . . . 320 

Dr. Mitchill's Address, .... . 321 

Mr. CoLDEN presents his Memoir to the Mayor, . . . . 321 

Mr. Crolius, and Members of Assembly, visit the Committees of the West on board the Seneca Chief, 322 

The Fleet returns to the City, circumnavigates and cheers the British Sloops of War, exchanging 

salutes, &c. . . . . . .322 

The Land Procession arrives at this moment at the Battery, short Description of if. . . 323 

Illuminations and Fire Works &c. &c, close the day, . ,. . . 326 





























On Monday evening a Grand Ball by the Military and Citizens, 
Description of the Ball, 

Dinner given to the Committees from the West by the Corporation, 
Return of the Seneca Chief to Buffalo, 


Termination of the Grand Canal Celebration, and return of the Seneca Chief to Buffalo, . 33-1 

Vote of Thanks in Common Council to Major General Fleming, Charles Rhi.\d, Esq. kc. . 337 

Distiibution of Medals and other Testimonials of Respect, . , . 339 



Report, .... . ... 343 

The Badge wom by the Corporation Guests, and Artists, . . . 344 

The hu-itatioa Card to the Invited Guests, and Artists, . . 345 

The Ball Ticket,— the Medal, and Artists, . . . . 346 

The Bos, and Artists, . , . .348 


Plan of the Fleet, . . . , .351 

Catiilogue of, and References to tlie Plan of the Fleet; — .\rtists, . . . 350 

Frontispiece, . . . , . 353 

Lithographic Maps, &c. . . . 11,125,113,3.54 

Lithographic Panorama — View of the Fleet preparing to form in Line off the Battery ; — ArtisLs 187, 356 


Hon. Cadwallader D. Colden' ; — Artists, . . 3 3gQ 

Hon. William Paulding ; — Artists, . , 033^ 3gQ 

Hon. Philip Hone ; — .\rtists, , . . 171,361 

Samuel L. AliTCHiLL, M. D. & LL. D. — Artists, . . 273,361 

Governor De Witt Clinton ; — .Artists, . . , 07 j 352 

Bust of the Hon. Richard Rieer; — Artist*, , _ 3g2 

Geologi^ Prolile, — Note on Sculpture, . ... 363 


Entrance to the Harbor, Lockport, . . , 296 365 

Lockport, Irom Prospect Hill, , . . 097 3gg 

Deep Cutting, Lockport, . , , 099^ 3g7 

Process of Excavation, Lockport, . . , ogg^ ggg 

Buffalo, from the Light-house, . , . 093 359 

Buffalo Harbor, from the Village, . , , 295, 370 

Junction of the Western and Northern Canals, . . 309,370 

View of the Cahooes Falls, from the Dam across the Mohawk, . 309, 371 




SadeUers Arms, 

House Painters Arms, 

Fancy Chair Makers, — Chairmakers Society, 


228, 372 
226, 372 
228, 373 


New York Nautical lastitution, . 

New York Marine Society, 

Pilots Charitable Society, 

Banner of the Whitehall Watermen, in the Aquatic Procession, 

Whitehall Watermen's Plate, lor Uie Laud Procession, 

Ropemakers Arms, . . . 

Students of Columbia College, 

Primitive View of New York, 

Ancient Map around Albany, 

203, 375 
201, 376 
205, 376 
207, 387 
209, 378 
236, 379 
256, 379 
. 387 


Washin^on Fire Company, No. 20 
East River Fire Company, No. 42, 
Engine, No. 15, 
Eagle Company, No. 13, 
Clinton Fire Company, No. 41, 
Pheuis Company, No. 22, 
La Fayette Company, No, 7, 
Hook and Ladder Companies, 
Fii-e Works, 

240, 369 

241, 390 
2-11. 391 

244, 391 

245, 392 

246, 392 


Autographic Fac-Similies, . . . . 395 

Transfer from Copperplate, . . . . 397 

Conclusion of Mr. Robertsoiv's Report, . . , 393 

Mr Robertson's Note to Hon. Richard Riker, Chairman of the Committee of the Corporation, 399 

Vote of Thanks, m Common Council to William L. Slone and ArcUibald Robertson, Esc^rs. . 400 


Page 31. — It is dup to Mr. Morris to mention that since the Memoir was written, the Author 
has ascertained that when in the year eighteen hundred, Mr. Morris suggested the practicability 
of enibling ships to sail from London into Lake Erie, and when in eighteen hundred and three he 
spoke of " tapping Lake Erie," he undoubtedly contemplated a water communication directly 
from that L ike to the Hudson, an I did not, as the Memoir supposes he might have done, refer 
to a coinmaaication by the Niagara Canal and Lake Ontario. 

Page 7S. — The extent of the improved navigation on the Hudson and on Wood Creek is 
not given correctly ; there are only eight miles of river navigation on the Hudson, and five miles 
on the Wood Creek. The eight miles on the Hudson will be passed the next season by a 
Canal which is now constructing. The whole communication bet>x een Lake Champlain and the 
Hudson will then be by Canal, except ths five miles on Wood Creek, so that the extent of the 
Candsis four hundred and twenty-two mil»?s, — that is to say, the Erie Canal is three hundred and 
sixty-three miles and the Champlain Canal, independent of the live miles on Wood Creek, is fifty- 
nine miles in length. 



The chief cause of failure in plates is the want of good finished drawings or desig;ns, furnished to the 
engraver or lithographer to work from, and not rude sketcSes. The designing and the engraving arts 
are totally distinct, and require exceedingly different faculties, which very rarely have been united, in even a 
tolerable degree, in any individual ; to this cause we mainly attribute so many failures on this side of the 
Atlantic. The writer of this has had very extensive experience on this head, and cannot too strongly urge on 
any one wishing to have a good plate, to be sure to furnish the engraver or lithographer with a good drawing at 
least, or painting — for the designing artist is as the author, the engraver but as the printer of a book ; we pray 
you who goes to a printer to have a book composed? The design i ng artist is the '■'primum mo6i/c," without whose 
inventive powers all is vain. In our operations we have greatly felt the want of a due attention to the above 
circumstances in those concerned in furnishing plates. The mighty mass of mind concentrated in Hogarth, is 
the only instance which we can at this moment call to recollection, in whom the very, very rare, faculties of tlie 
designer, inventor or composer, were united to tliose of the engi-aver. 

*;k* There are some typographical errors, both verbal and literal, scattered throughout tliis volume, particu- 
lirly towards its conclusion ; but not of sufficient moment so as necessarily to require a Table of Errata ; not- 
withstantling, the sense will be easily apprehended by the candid reader, however awkward some of these mis- 
takes may appear at first view. 





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